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 (sĕt′ôf′, -ŏf′)
1. Something, such as a decoration, that sets off something else by contrast.
2. Something that offsets or compensates for something else; a counterbalance.
3. A counterclaim that reduces or discharges the amount owed to a claimant.
4. Architecture See setback.
5. Printing See offset.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(ˈsɛtˌɔf, -ˌɒf)

1. something that counterbalances or makes up for something else, as compensation for a loss.
2. a counterbalancing claim that cancels an amount a debtor owes.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.setoff - structure where a wall or building narrows abruptly
structure, construction - a thing constructed; a complex entity constructed of many parts; "the structure consisted of a series of arches"; "she wore her hair in an amazing construction of whirls and ribbons"
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.


The American Heritage® Roget's Thesaurus. Copyright © 2013, 2014 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
"All that is very well," said Don Quixote; "but let the shoes and the blood-lettings stand as a setoff against the blows you have given him without any cause; for if he spoiled the leather of the shoes you paid for, you have damaged that of his body, and if the barber took blood from him when he was sick, you have drawn it when he was sound; so on that score he owes you nothing."
In the absence of Debtor & Creditor Law section 151, a levy prior to prepayment interferes with the debtor's right of setoff. Where, prior to the prepayment, an execution has been served and a levy accomplished, the debtor is divested of the claim against the garnishee and can no longer exercise the setoff right.
In addition, he assists clients in developing and negotiating credit arrangements to minimize transaction risk, including guaranties, credit support addenda, netting and setoff agreements, and master netting agreements.
Applications: pick testing, setoff, color, fastnesses, missing dots, toner adhesion, and many more.
The appellate court held that the husband was entitled to a 50 percent credit of the reimbursable household expenses he paid from separation to the date of sale without considering the matter of a 50 percent fair rental value setoff.
A series of advances, totaling $334,400, were made between January 2003 and May 2003, each backed by a separate promissory note, set forth with a payment schedule and a waiver of the right to interpose any setoff or counterclaim.
Many reinsurance agreements contain setoff clauses, which provide, in substance that the parties to the agreement may offset any and all reinsurance debts owed by or to them under the same or any other reinsurance agreement between them.
Unfortunately, when the taxpayer owes tax for a delinquent year, it can be assessed; no setoff is available.
Food can be adulterated by passage of food grade ink through diffusion, setoff from a printed surface or while in use -- particularly cooking at high temperatures.
Instead, counties seeking to recover the cost of jailing the defendant must use a process in which the Office of State Courts Administrator can seek a setoff from a defendant's income-tax refunds or lottery-prize payouts.