A charge in basketball is a foul assessed to an offensive player who possesses the ball and makes excessive contact with a defensive player who is properly positioned on the court. In order for the foul to be deemed a charge, the defensive player must have both his feet set in the path of the ball handler and not be moving into his path. The offensive player must also be out of control and make contact with the set defender.
Charges cannot be called within the restricted area, which is a semi circle about 4 feet in width placed under the basket in most professional and collegiate basketball games. The result a charging foul is turnover and possibly free-throws if a team is in the bonus. The opposite of a charge is called a blocking foul, which is when the defensive player is not properly set and stops the movement an offensive player when the contact occurs.