get something on someone(redirected from have something on someone)
get (something) on (someone)
1. To have incriminating or unfavorable proof against someone, as for some crime, wrongdoing, or misbehavior. Go to the police, for all I care! You haven't got anything on me! If we want to nail him for fraud, we'll need to get more on him than a few questionable phone calls.
2. To have a particular advantage over someone. You may think you can beat me, but I've got 10 years' experience on you.
get on (one)
1. To bother or nag one (about something). I always have to get on the kids to clean their rooms. I really wish the boss would stop getting on me about the report—I already told him I'd have it finished by the end of the week!
2. To obtain or possess some incriminating information about one. In this usage, a noun or pronoun is used between "get" and "on." The police are convinced the CEO is responsible, but they haven't gotten anything on her yet. We need proof, not speculation. Come back to me when you've got something on him, and then we'll press charges.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
get something on someone
Also, have something on someone. Obtain or possess damaging knowledge about someone. For example, They hoped to get something on the candidate, or Once Tom had something on his boss, he knew he would not be pressured again. [c. 1920] Also see be on to.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.