Tackling your debts

Got a CCJ? It’s not too late to get on top of your debts

Posted 06 May 2014

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<p>If you’ve received a CJJ, don’t assume your finances are beyond help. There’s still plenty of advice and support available to you.</p>

If you’ve received a CCJ because of outstanding debts, it’s important you know that this is not the end of the line for your finances. You should also remember that you’re not alone, and plenty of others are in the same position as you.

1 in 10

In the last five years, nearly one in 10 adults in the UK have had either a County Court Judgement (CCJ) (in England and Wales) or Court Decree (in Scotland) granted against them*. This is a formal decision by the court that you owe money and have defaulted on the repayments.

A study conducted for us revealed that, of the more than 4 million Brits with one or more of these judgements to their name, 1 in 10 have over £10,000 worth of debts listed in them. However, on the other end of the scale, a further 1 in 10 have debts of £250 or less included.

How does a CCJ affect me?

Your initial CCJ claim form will detail what you owe and how it should be repaid. You can then choose to repay it in full immediately, pay it later or in instalments, or you might launch a dispute against the creditor.

Paying back the full sum that you owe straightaway (usually within one month of receiving the court summons), including any interest and charges, means you shouldn’t have a CCJ recorded against you. However, if you’re unable to pay it all back immediately, the CCJ will be listed for six years.

Having a CCJ makes it very difficult to access new credit. Because your credit file includes this information, you’ll find it hard to borrow any more for the next six years … and if you do find a creditor willing to lend to you, the loan may well come with a particularly high rate of interest attached.

Don’t give up

If you’ve received a CCJ against you, it’s important you don’t ignore it and simply give up. There are still things you can do that should mean you’re able to take steps towards paying back the debt and getting on top of your finances.

Our advisors work with lots of clients who have CCJs to their names. We provide them with the help and support they need to find a debt solution that might be suitable for them, and we can also guide them through this process.

Receiving a CCJ is not the end of the road for your finances … providing you don’t let it be.

*OnePoll questioned a nationally representative sample of 2,000 adults aged 18 and over between 4th April and 9th April 2014, of whom 500 were Scottish residents. Figures have been extrapolated to fit ONS 2013 population projections of 50,371,000 UK adults.

by Sarah Symons

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To find out more about managing your money and getting free debt advice, visit Money Advice Service, an independent service set up to help people manage their money.