A County Court Judgment or CCJ is a straightforward way for creditors to claim the money they are owed. A judgment is issued by the County Court when you fail to pay the money that you owe and it will be registered against you if you fail to repay the creditor within a month.
If you’ve received a CCJ from a creditor, it’s crucial to respond within the timeframe given. If a CCJ has been issued against you, it will affect your credit rating and make it difficult for you to borrow. If you are unable to settle the debt, you may want to to know how long it will stay on your credit file.
How do CCJs Affect Your Credit Rating?
Credit reference agencies keep a record of any CCJs issued against you and will display this information on your credit file for potential lenders to see. When you apply for a loan, mortgage or even a mobile phone contract, the lender will use your credit file to assess whether you are creditworthy or in other words how likely you are to repay the money you are borrowing.
If you repay the full amount within a month of receiving your CCJ, the judgment will be removed from the Register of Orders Judgments and Fines, and there will be no record of it on your credit file. Therefore, it won’t affect your credit rating at all.
However, if you to fail to repay the amount within a month, a record of the CCJ will stay on the register and your credit file for six years from the date of the judgment. This is a long time and can make it difficult to get a mortgage, a credit card or even a bank account. After six years, details of the CCJ will be removed from the public register and from your credit file, even if you’ve not yet paid it all off.
If you pay after a month, the CCJ will remain on the register and be marked as “satisfied”. This may make it easier to apply for credit before the CCJ drops off your credit file in six years. Unpaid county court judgments are shown as unsatisfied.
It’s important to consider that the register is public and for a small fee anyone can check it to find out if you have an outstanding CCJ.
I was Unaware of the CCJ on my Credit File
You will typically be informed of your CCJ as soon as it is issued to you. However, if the court papers are sent to the wrong address, for instance, you may not be aware of it. Therefore, if you’re having difficulty obtaining credit and you’ve missed repayments in the past, check your credit report to make sure that you haven’t got any CCJs on your file.
For more information about CCJs and the impact that they can have on your borrowing if they are not dealt with promptly, please call 08000 746 757 or email [email protected] for free and confidential advice from one of our professional advisers.