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If you have a County Court Judgment (CCJ) against you, it can make it difficult to get credit in the future, so it’s understandable if you’re wondering how long the CCJ will stay on your credit report.
In this article we’ll explore what County Court Judgements are, as well as the consequences of having a CCJ on your credit report, and how long those consequences will last.
Here’s what you need to know about CCJs and your credit file.
A County Court Judgment (CCJ) is a court order issued by the County Court (England and Wales) which states an individual must pay an outstanding debt.
Creditors can apply for this court order if an individual has failed to keep up with payments as agreed.
CCJ’s are normally issued if the Court agrees with creditors that an individual purposefully missed, or couldn’t fully commit, to regular payments on financial arrangements they had previously agreed to.
When the County Court orders a CCJ against an individual, they must repay the debt in question according to the Court’s timetable, or face further legal action.
Your credit report is a detailed record of your financial history, stored and maintained by the credit reference agencies.
It contains information such as past loan applications, any missed payments on debt and also county court judgements (CCJ’s).
Your credit report will be affected by having a CCJ against you in that it can cause lenders to view you as a higher risk borrower.
Credit reports aren’t public, but are accessible to lenders, which is why it’s important to regularly check your credit report and take steps to address any issues promptly in order to improve your credit score.
As well as showing up on your credit report, details of any County Court Judgment taken against you will also be available in other places, including those below.
The Register of Judgments, Orders, and Fines is a public database maintained by the Ministry of Justice.
It contains public information about judgments, orders and fines in civil cases issued in courts throughout England and Wales.
This public register is available online for anyone to access and view. The register keeps a record of money owed to creditors after a CCJ (County Court Judgment) is granted.
If you have received a CCJ it will be listed on this public register, making it available to the public.
Credit reference agencies are organisations that collect and collate data on individuals’ financial history which is used by banks, lenders and other companies to assess an individual’s eligibility for credit.
As such, when it comes to a CCJ, the same rule applies – any unpaid debt or judgment against you will appear on your credit record.
This means that anyone who accesses your credit report – including credit reference agencies – will be able to see the CCJ.
A CCJ will remain on credit records for six years from the date it was first issued, and will have various direct impacts on the individual’s life for as long as it stays on their credit report
Having a CCJ on your credit report will alert future lenders to the fact that an individual has had difficulty adhering to credit agreements in the past, making it more difficult for the individual to access further credit.
Being accepted for a mortgage, loan, or other credit agreements will become more difficult. Even a bank account with a new high street bank can become a challenge.
That’s why taking steps towards addressing this type of judgment is highly advisable for anyone facing a CCJ.
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If you have a CCJ (County Court Judgment) on your credit file, it can certainly bring down your credit rating.
Paying the CCJ within 30 days is one way to mitigate the damage to your credit profile; this will be noted on your credit record and should help to restore the confidence of lenders towards you.
If you are unable to pay within 30 days, it is possible to get a CCJ removed if there has been a mistake or if the debt has been paid in full.
In either case, you’ll need to fill out an N443 claim form and submit it to your local court – along with a small fee. If accepted, the CCJ will be removed from your file.
Alternatively, you may want to wait until six years have passed after which any County Court Judgment will be automatically removed from your record and the Register of Judgments, Orders, and Fines (unless ongoing payments are required).
Ignoring a County Court Judgement (CCJ) can have serious consequences. Missed payments will result in default notices which, if ignored, can lead to County Court bailiffs being sent to your home or business to seize possessions in order to cover costs.
Continually ignoring a CCJ could result in further court action. Depending on your circumstances, this might include sequestration – or seizure – of assets, or the enforced sale of property.
Refusal to comply with a County Court order can also result in you being held in contempt and potentially facing imprisonment for your non-compliance.
It is important to take any CCJ seriously and explore all options available to avoid such severe penalties. If you have a CCJ against you, you will be given the opportunity to dispute it on your local County Court hearing centre, and the court are open to bespoke arrangements based on what an individual can afford.
Rebuilding your credit rating after a County Court Judgement (CCJ) can be a long and challenging journey, however it is possible.
The first step should be ensuring that you pay all outstanding payments on time, such as any debt repayments or pay credit agreements, to show creditors and lenders you are able to pay for services that you have requested, on time and in full.
Additionally, regularly check your credit report as this will give you transparency into your financial affairs.
It’s also important that you ensure the information held by credit reference agencies is correct, including address details – ensure they have your current one, as the wrong address can actually lower your credit score.
Finally, joining up with the local electoral roll will help improve and boost your credit rating, as this provides an additional means of checking and confirming identities.
If debt is taking a toll on your life, don’t hesitate to seek professional advice and guidance. IVA Plan has an experienced team of advisors that specialise in providing customised solutions tailored to each individual’s needs.
Whether you’re struggling to budget on low income, or you’re dealing with mounting debts you can’t afford to repay, we understand the importance of tailoring plans according to what works best for you.
To get a handle on your debts and get back on the road to financial stability, reach out to IVA Plan today.
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