total loss

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total loss (plural total losses)

  1. (accounting) An insured item of which the entire value is written off.
    Synonyms: writeoff, write-off
    Coordinate terms: writedown, write-down
  2. (insurance) An insured item that is written off when it is beyond repair, or when the cost of repair exceeds the insured value.
    The ship was declared a constructive total loss.
    • 1866 August 18, “LAST NEWS OF ANNA BISHOP”, in The Musical World[1], volume 44, number 33, London, →OCLC, page 521:
      Intelligence has been received at Hong Kong of the total loss of the ship Libelle while on a voyage to that port from San Francisco, having on board a valuable cargo and specie to the extent of £76,000 in dollars, and a number of passengers, among whom were Madame Anna Bishop, Miss Phelan, Mr. M. Schrutz, and Mr. Charles Lascelles, of the English Opera Company, who, with other artists, were on a musical tour. The ship was cast away on the night of the 4th of March, on an uninhabited and dangerous reef called Wake Island, in the China Seas.

Derived terms[edit]

  • (to cause total loss): total (verb)


  • Dutch: total loss
  • Hebrew: טוטל לוס (totál los)