What is a CCJ
A CCJ – County Court Judgment is a court order that is sometimes issued against a defendant who is unable to repay their debts. It is one way that creditors can use to try and recoup money from someone who has failed to pay back a debt. If a CCJ is issued against you, it will be recorded, with some exceptions, on the Register of Judgements, Orders and Fines.
Below we explain what this register is, who uses it and what you might need to know if you find yourself on it.
What is the CCJ Register?
The Register of Judgements, Orders and Fines (sometimes referred to simply as ‘the CCJ Register’) is a public register, part of which contains details on people that have had County Court Judgements issued against them. It is maintained by The Registry Trust, on behalf of the Ministry of Justice, and is available to search online.
The register contains the name and address of the individual concerned, as well as the case and court number of the particular order. It will also include the sum of money involved and once the case has been resolved, it will be updated to also include this fact. The register does not hold any information on the claimant, this is only available to the defendant, via the court that issued the judgement.
If payment is made within one month of the judgment, all details will be removed from the register. CCJs can also be cancelled or ‘set aside’, if it can be shown that it was issued in error or if it can be proven that the defendant was not aware of the CCJ, for example, because of a missing letter. It is also possible to make repayments in instalments, rather than as a lump sum.
Why are Tenants CCJ’s Not Usually Registered?
The Registry Trust Ltd is contracted to the Ministry of Justice to maintain the public register of CCJ’s (and other orders and fines) for England and Wales, this enables other credit reference agencies, such as Experian, to update their data and provide up to date credit checks.
Although many CCJ’s are registered with the Registry Trust Ltd, certain judgements are not which means there are many debtors who can pass credit checks without their CCJ showing.
Under the Register of Judgements, Orders and Fines Regulations 2005 a CCJ obtained through possession proceedings will not be registered with The Registry Trust Ltd, the consequence is that when carrying out credit checks on prospective tenants you cannot be certain if the report is accurate where previous CCJ’s are concerned.
Increasing Accuracy of Credit Checks
The BLA (British Landlords Association) are launching a data base of CCJ’s obtained through possession proceedings, it is the first data base of its kind and runs parallel to credit checks carried out via the BLA. The data the BLA hold is obtained from us, Landlord Advice UK and other leading eviction companies, other firms and individual landlords are also welcome to provide the required information to update the data base.
Source; Mr Sasha Charles