Register of Judgments, Orders and Fines
If a judgment has been issued against you, your details will be recorded on the Register of Judgments, Orders and Fines (previously known as the Register of County Court Judgments).
The types of judgments documented on the Register of Judgments, Orders, and Fines include County Court Judgments (CCJs) and, since 2006, High Court Judgments.
What is the Register of Judgments, Orders and Fines?
The Register of Judgments, Orders and Fines is a public register that includes information on debtors that have had a County Court Judgment or High Court Judgment issued against them.
It is maintained by the Registry Trust Limited, which is a not-for-profit company in England and Wales that maintains similar registers in Scotland and Northern Ireland, on behalf of the Ministry of Justice.
It is also publicly searchable so you, or anyone else, can search for details of a CCJ online for a small fee.
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What details appear on the Register of Judgments, Orders and Fines?
The Register of Judgments, Orders and Fines contains details of County Court Judgments and High Court Judgments. This includes:
- The full name of the debtor
- The debtor’s address
- The debtor’s date of birth
- The date of the judgment
- The claim number
- The amount of money owed
- The name of the court
- The judgment status (ongoing or resolved)
It doesn’t, however, contain claimant information with these details only visible to the defendant through the court that issued the judgment.
What is a County Court Judgment?
A County Court Judgment (CCJ) is a type of court order in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland that can be issued against a debtor that has failed to repay money owed within an agreed timeframe. In Scotland, it is known as a decree.
If a creditor (individual or business) has repeatedly failed to contact the debtor to receive owed money, for example, they can contact the courts and initiate court proceedings.
If the claim is ignored, creditors can instruct the courts to issue a CCJ with debtors usually informed through written notice sent to their current address.
Can I view County Court Judgments online?
If a CCJ has been issued against you, immediate access can be granted to you, or anyone, by visiting the official statutory Register of Judgments, Orders, and Fines online.
To do so, a small fee will be required (usually between £6 and £10 per search) with landlords and employers able to search the Registry Trust for evidence that a prospective tenant or employee has been issued with a CCJ recently or in the past.
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How long will a CCJ stay on the Register of Judgments, Orders, and Fines?
If you have been served with a CCJ, it will stay on the Register of Judgments, Orders, and Fines and your credit file for six years from the date it was originally issued whether it has been paid or not. This can make it difficult to borrow money or get credit during this time.
If you repay the money owed straightaway, however, you may be able to get it removed with the main UK credit reference agencies (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion) informed that you have repaid your debt and your credit rating updated accordingly.
Can a CCJ be removed?
It is possible to get a County Court Judgment removed or set aside from the Register of Judgments, Orders and Fines.
It is worth noting, however, that CCJs are usually only removed under limited circumstances, such as judgments entered in default of a defence.
Pay in full within one month
If you pay the full amount claimed within one month of receiving a CCJ, it will be removed from the register and your credit file.
To do so, you must write to the court and inform them that you have paid with the creditor you were in debt to also required to send proof of payment.
If you are unable to request this information, you must still send evidence, such as a bank statement, alongside your application to the court.
Pay in full after 30 days
If you pay the full amount claimed after 30 days of receiving a CCJ, it will be marked as satisfied and you will be favoured by creditors.
Because the payment was made after 30 days, however, it will still remain on the register and your credit file for six years.
Make an application notice
You may also be able to have a CCJ removed by filling out a N244 form to ask a court to remove or set aside a judgment.
To make an application notice, however, you must pay a fee of between £50 and £275 and be able to prove that action taken against you in issuing the CCJ was either incorrect or unfair.
Can a CCJ impact my credit rating?
A CCJ can impact your credit rating in the same way that any other court order or judgment can.
Because CCJs stay on the Register of Judgments, Orders and Fines for six years, this information can be accessed by banks and lenders and influence their decision to let you borrow money or get credit during this time.
It, essentially, proves that you have struggled with debt in the past which, to a lender, can serve as a poor indication of your ability to repay money owed in full or on time. This can make it difficult to open a bank account, get a mortgage, or even access small lines of credit.
Can I have a CCJ without knowing?
There are several reasons why you could have a CCJ without knowing.
It is not uncommon, for example, for some creditors to purposely issue a CCJ to a debtor’s former address or fail to follow the correct procedure when issuing a CCJ. When this happens, the court will enter into a CCJ ‘in default’ because they will assume the debtor has simply ignored the claim.
Because of this, some debtors only become aware of a CCJ months, or even years, down the line when they apply for a loan, mortgage, or anything else that requires a credit check.
Where can I get more information on the Register of Judgments, Orders and Fines?
If you are looking for more information on the Register of Judgments, Orders and Fines, there are several options available to you.
To find out if a CCJ has been issued against you or to check if your credit history is accurate, you can pay a fee of £2 and request a copy of your credit report from a credit reference agency.
If you have been issued with a CCJ and don’t know where to turn, contact our helpful advisors on 0800 0431 431 who can point you in the right direction and inform you of your next steps.