Difference between Duties and Responsibilities | Responsibilities vs Duties

What is the Difference between Duties and Responsibilities?

The generally accepted meanings of these two above words are as follows: duty is an obligation that one has to fulfill and responsibility is the act of accepting and acting on a task that has been assigned to you. However, in English grammar, the words ‘duty’ and ‘responsibility’ are often used interchangeably. In this article, we shall explore the various contexts, as well as meanings of the words, from a grammatical perspective.

Table of Contents

Table Summarising the Difference between Duties and Responsibilities:

Duty Responsibility
Usage Both words are used as nouns.
  1. A legal or moral obligation.
  2. A task to be performed and is usually part of one’s job.
  3. A payment levied on goods that are imported or exported.
  1. Having control over someone or duty involves dealing with something.
  2. Being accountable for something.
  3. Act independently and take the right decisions according to the processes under authority.
Plural forms Duties. Responsibilities.

The Meanings of Duties and Responsibilities

As already discussed, the most commonly used meaning of ‘duty’ is a legal or moral obligation. At the same time, ‘responsibility’ refers to having control over something or the need to deal with something. However, as the context and usage vary, the meanings of these words also change.

Examples of Responsibilities and Duties

Following are examples which help differentiate the words ‘duty’ and ‘responsibility’:

  • Duties:
    • A legal or moral obligation – It’s every citizen’s duty to abide by the law.
    • A task to be performed and is usually part of one’s job – These days, the King’s duties are just ceremonial.
    • A payment levied on goods that are imported or exported – Duty on imports were levied at 6%.
  • Responsibilities:
    • Having control over someone or duty while dealing with something – An efficient manager takes responsibility for the team.
    • Being accountable for something – No terror organisation has claimed responsibility for the bombings yet.
    • Act independently and take decisions without the need for authorisation – Writers must take more responsibility.

Duties vs. Responsibilities – Conclusion

English grammar is important regardless of the fact that you’re reading, writing, or communicating. It can also help you enhance your personal vocabulary. Moreover, grammar is necessary to improve the quality of sentences by making them clearer and more concise. In this article, we have explored the difference between duties and responsibilities, their usage and examples. Discover other important English Differences Between articles, only on BYJU’S English.


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