impose on versus impose for

Status
Not open for further replies.

Shibuya

New member
Joined
Feb 19, 2008
Member Type
English Teacher
Greetings all - apologies if this should be in the idioms section.

I was wondering if anyone could give me a simple explanation between the difference in use of 'impose on' and 'impose for'.

It came up in one of my classes and my initial thought was that impose on is always correct but the student produced a lot of examples where impose for is used - often pertaining to tax/fines/penalties etc.

Any ideas?
Thanks all!
 

oregeezer

Member
Joined
Nov 24, 2007
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
American English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
Thailand
My Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary has 2 definitions (both verbs)
1.) [FORCE] to officially force a rule, tax, punishment to be obeyed or received.
2.) [EXPECT] to expect someone to do something for you ... they do not want to do.
so 1.) could be "A tax imposed for collection." or "To impose a tax for environmental reasons." and
2.) would almost always be "May I impose on you?" Can't think of ANY exceptions.
 
Last edited:

Anglika

No Longer With Us
Joined
Oct 19, 2006
Member Type
Other
You impose on someone/something, but a tax or fine can be imposed for a purpose.

There is a tax imposed for the support of education.
He had a fine imposed for exceeding the speed limit.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top