If you are struggling with debt, you may receive a County Court Judgment, abbreviated CCJ. Receiving a Claim Form/Court Summons for a CCJ can be nerve-wracking and scary.
Our debt management experts will provide you quick, professional advice at no charge. This information will help you begin managing your debt, regardless of its size.
The CCJ Claim Form Explained
A creditor can go through the Country Court to reclaim money owned by an individual in debt. A County Court Claim Form, also called a Court Summons, is the first step in the legal process. The Court sends this form to the debtor. The document details how much the creditor is owed by the individual. The recipient of the Claim Form must reply within 14 days.
Response involves completing an Income and Expenditure Form and providing a payment offer. If this reply is not issued within 14 days, the creditor may request a Judgment by Default, which could require the debtor to repay the outstanding balance in full as well as additional costs. If you have received a County Court Claim Form, contact us for guidance on how to proceed.
What Happens After the Income and Expenditure Form is Submitted
Once you reply to the County Court Claim Form by completing and submitting the Income and Expenditure Form, wait for a reply from the Court. If your payment offer is accepted, you will get a County Court Judgment that includes instructions for how and when to make the payments. If the offer is not accepted or you fail to reply, the CCJ you receive will reflect a payment amount determined by the Court. This could result in you having to pay more than is affordable.
If you cannot afford the Court-dictated payment, notify the Court in writing within 14 days. Include the case number, a current financial statement, and request that the payment be redetermined. If the second offer is still unaffordable, immediately contact a money adviser.
Defaulting on a CCJ can lead to an attachment of earnings, removal of goods from the home by a bailiff, a Third Party Debt Order that freezes bank accounts, or a petition for bankruptcy, each of which can be very detrimental.
For various reasons, a payment that is initially affordable can become too expensive. If you are no longer able to afford the payment, complete form N245 to request a revision of the amount. Send this to the Court with a £30 fee. Individuals on benefits are not required to pay the fee but they must complete and submit a fee exemption form.
If the total amount due is not repaid within a month of the judgment date, a CCJ within Wales or England is recorded for six years on The Register of Judgments, Orders and Fines. Should you repay the amount within this six-year period, the CCJ will be marked satisfied.
However, this CCJ will be reflected on your credit file. If the amount is not repaid by the end of the six years, the CCJ is marked unsatisfied, which can adversely affect your credit rating.