If a debt is listed as “charged off,” has the creditor sold the debt?

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If a debt is listed as “charged off,” has the creditor sold the debt?

Asked on October 22, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Michigan

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

No, when a debt is "charged off," it has been "written off" as uncollectible or a bad debt, and the creditor may then take a tax deduction based on the loss. If a debt is sold, it is not written off, at least not in it entirety, since the creditor has received something for the debt. The creditor could, however,  charge off part of the debt if it received less than full value for it. Say you owe $100; say the creditor sells the debt to someone for $40; the creditor would charge off the $60 it is giving up on.


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