A chargeoff of a debt occurs when, after a certain period of time, credit card or loan issuers consider an unpaid credit card or loan account as a loss and therefore charge it off their books. Often, the account is then turned over to collection firms or attorneys for handling. A chargeoff for debts can be collected several years later unless it was discharged in a bankruptcy procedure.
The following is an example of a state law dealing with chargeoffs:
RCW 50.24.200 Chargeoff of uncollectible accounts.
The commissioner may charge off as uncollectible and no longer an asset of the unemployment compensation fund or the administrative contingency fund, as the case may be, any delinquent contributions, interest, penalties, credits, or benefit overpayments if the commissioner is satisfied that there are no cost-effective means of collecting the contributions, interest, penalties, credits, or benefit overpayments.