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County Court Judgments (CCJs) against businesses in England and Wales fell 36 percent in Q4 2020, compared to the same quarter in 2019, according to figures released today (08.01.2021) by Registry Trust.

The number of CCJs against businesses decreased from 23,418 in Q4 2019 to 15,052 in Q4 2020. The total value of CCJ debt owed by businesses fell by 17 percent, from £92 million to £77 million. The average value of business debt hit £5,089 in the quarter, 29 percent higher than the £3,942 seen in Q4 2019. The median value rose by 20 percent from £1,494 to £1,796 over the period.

The number of judgments against larger incorporated businesses fell by 37 percent, from 15,626 in Q4 2019 to 9,882 in Q4 2020. The total value of judgments fell by much less, 12 percent, from £69 million to £60 million. As a result, the average value rose by 39 percent £4,387 to £6,095, with the median value up 32 percent from £1,672 to £2,205.

The number of CCJs against smaller unincorporated businesses fell by a similar amount, by 34 percent, from 7,792 to 5,170, with the total value dropping from £24 million to £16 million, down 31 percent. The average value rose from £3,060 to £3,166, up 3.8 percent, while the median value rose by 6.9 percent from £1,235 to £1,320.

The number of High Court Judgments against businesses rose from 27 in Q4 2019 to 50 in Q4 2020 an increase of 85 percent. The total value rose from £7.5 million to £46 million, an increase of over 500 percent. The small number of registered High Court Judgments means these figures are subject to large fluctuations.

The number of business judgments marked as ‘satisfied’ in Q4 2020 was 2,845, a fall of 10 percent from the 3,161 in Q4 2019. As the number of judgments registered in Q4 2020 was lower than in Q4 2019, the proportion of judgments marked as satisfied has risen. But, it remains very low at 12.6% percent.

Mick McAteer, chairman of Registry Trust, said: “The fall in judgments against businesses this quarter is encouraging. Interventions by government have shielded businesses against the worst economic impacts of Covid19. But, the rate of decrease slowed sharply towards the end of 2020, so we may see judgments now starting to rise again”.

Half Year 2019 Half Year 2020 Change (compared with 2019)
CCJs against all businesses
volume 23,418 15,052 -35.72%
total value £92,311,503 £76,592,195 -17.03%
average* value £3,942 £5,089 29.08%
median £1,494 £1,796 20.25%
CCJs against incorporated businesses
volume 15,626 9,882 -36.76%
total value £68,549,570 £60,226,066 -12.14%
average* value £4,387 £6,095 38.93%
median £1,672 £2,205 31.88%
CCJs against unincorporated businesses
volume 7,792 5,170 -33.65%
total value £23,761,933 £16,366,129 -31.12%
average* value £3,050 £3,166 3.81%
median £1,235 £1,320 6.93%
High Court judgments against all businesses
volume 27 50 85.19%
total value £7,545,465 £45,971,228 509.26%
average* value £279,462 £919,425 229.00%
median £3,741 £21,335 470.29%
Satisfactions registered by all businesses
volume 3,161 2,845 -10%
total value £9,272,071 £8,923,457 -3.66%
average* value £2,933 £3,140 7.04%
median £1,242 £1,453 16.99%

For more information contact

0207 391 7287

Notes for editors

Registry Trust is the Registrar for Judgments, Orders and Fines in England and Wales on behalf of the Ministry of Justice. The Register includes county court judgments, high court judgments, CSA liability orders, fine defaults and tribunal awards for England and Wales.

CCJs are removed from the register if paid in full within one calendar month of the judgment date, but will otherwise remain registered for six years. If fully paid outside the one calendar month, defendants can apply to have the judgment marked as ‘satisfied’ which will improve their credit rating.

Anyone may search for entries against a named person or business at a stated address or a corporate body in Great Britain, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland by visiting Registry Trust’s website or by writing to Registry Trust, 153-157 Cleveland Street, London W1T 6QW.