A County Court Judgment (CCJ) is a formal decree made by a county court in the UK when someone fails to pay the money that they owe. Understanding the implications and duration of a CCJ is crucial, not just for those who have been served with one but for anyone concerned about their financial record.
How long will a CCJ remain on my record?
A CCJ remains on your credit record for six years from the date of judgment, irrespective of whether you’ve paid it off in full or not. The presence of a CCJ on your credit report can negatively impact your creditworthiness, making it difficult to obtain loans, credit cards, or even some types of employment. Lenders and financial institutions view individuals with CCJs as higher-risk borrowers, which can lead to higher interest rates or outright refusals of credit.
What happens if I pay my CCJ off?
However, if you manage to pay the amount you owe in full within a month of receiving the judgment, the CCJ will be removed from your record. If you settle the amount after this one-month window, the CCJ won’t be erased but can be marked as “satisfied” on your credit report. While this is a more positive notation than an unpaid CCJ, it can still act as a red flag to potential lenders.
What if my CCJ was incorrectly issues?
It’s also worth noting that if you believe a CCJ was incorrectly issued or if there are legitimate reasons to set it aside, you can apply to the court to have the judgment set aside or varied. However, this is not a straightforward process and typically requires strong evidence or legitimate reasons, such as not having received the original claim form or if you had already paid the claimant before the judgment was made.
If the six-year period has lapsed and the CCJ is still on your credit report, it should be removed automatically. If not, you can contact the credit reference agencies and request its removal. Regularly monitoring your credit report is a good practice to ensure all information is accurate and up-to-date.
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In conclusion, while a CCJ lasts for six years on your credit record, its implications can be long-lasting. It’s always in your best interest to avoid getting into such situations. If faced with one, addressing it promptly and understanding your rights and responsibilities can make a significant difference in managing its impact on your financial future.