This debt advice applies to individuals in England and Wales only.
A County Court Judgement or CCJ is an order from the county court dictating you to pay your debt to your creditors. It is one of the actions considered by your creditors to recover the money that you owe.
You will be given over two weeks to respond to a County Court claim form. Your priority is to respond within the given period. If you fail to comply, the court has the authority to impose debt payments at a rate that you might not afford. Besides, failure to do so can lead to further enforcement procedures.
Furthermore, you should not panic when you get a County Court Claim. If your creditor considers a court claim against you, we can give you advice on how to deal with it.
Besides, if you need help with your finances and how it’s being affected by the coronavirus pandemic. we can help you get back on your feet. Simply contact us for a free debt advice.
Dealing With A Letter Of Claim
Before your creditor considers a County Court claim, they are obliged to give you the details regarding your debt. This is done through a letter of claim that will be sent to you.
Do not get carried out as soon as you receive a letter of claim. You will have 30 days to answer it through the reply form provided along with the letter of claim. It is imperative that you answer the letter within the period so you can prevent your creditor from taking court matters against you.
The reply form can be used to:
- inform the creditor that you are getting debt advice
- request further details about your debt when deemed necessary
- respond to your creditor
- complete the details required in the financial statement with an offer to pay your debt to an amount you can afford as a lump sum
In case you and your creditor arrived at an agreement on how you can repay your debt as mentioned in your response, the chances of court action can be prevented. It is important that you refrain from ignoring your creditors, doing so will make your situation worst.
Determine Northampton and Other County Court Forms
Your creditors will write to you before taking legal matters. If the debt is regulated by the Consumer Credit Act, a default notice will be sent out before your creditor can obtain court action.
You will know if your creditor proceeds with matters to court when you get court forms in the post. If this occurs you need to initiate a response right away. In addition, your creditors should be kept updated on your address for you to receive urgent letters and notices.
When you get forms that seem to be from a court, you may have to validate it. The following pointers will help you determine if you get a claim pack, which is an indication that your creditor had proceeded to apply for a County Court judgment or CCJ.
Forms Sent By Court
There are actually 4 forms enclosed in a claim pack. These forms show these titles or heading at the top. These are usually printed on white or blue and white with its name at the top and the form number which can be found at the bottom right-hand corner.
- N1 – Claim form
- N9 – Response pack
- N9A – Admission or a specified amount
- N9B – Defence and counterclaim
Claim Form, Admission Form, Defence Form
These forms consist of information at the top right corner. It shows the name of a court, most of the time its Northampton County Court. Your name is also included, your creditor’s name together with the reference number of the account number of your debt. A claim number which distinguishes your case is also shown in these forms.
N1 Claim Form
This form indicates the amount of debt that you owe and consists of a section referred to as particulars of claim. The particulars of claim section describe the type and nature of your debt.
Now, if you did not see these sections on the form you received, you must reach out to your creditors or the court, or contact us so we can help you determine and verify it.
Completing the County Court Forms
You are given within 14 days to complete all the forms and sent them back to your creditor. However, the court may allow a few days’ extension for the claim pack you got in the post to be completed.
Basically, the exact deadline or extension depends on the court that issued the claim. if replying via post is inconvenient on your part, you do it online or if not apply for an extension through an acknowledgment service form.
If you need further details and useful tips in filling out CCJ forms, you can refer to our guide: County Court claim process.
What Happens After Returning the Form?
After completing and returning the court forms, both the creditor and court should settle on the amount you offered to pay towards your debt. This offer is included in the forms and usually, the agreed amount is paid through installments.
If you remain obedient and honest towards the arrangements made, you can potentially prevent creditors from taking further actions. For homeowners, creditors are permitted to apply for a charging order. When this happens your debt is secured against your home. Besides, no further enforcement can be taken further aside from this.
If you ignore your debts and disregard these forms, the court procedures can be drastic. We recommend reading our guide on how to deal with CCJ. This way you’ll understand much deeper the consequences of ignoring CCJ.
Can I Still Get CCJ while On DMP or TPP?
Even if you’re on a DMP, you will still get a CCJ. However, since a DMP shows how sincere you are in paying your debt, this will convey a message to your creditor that you are willing to make regular payments that you can afford.
On the other hand, when on a token payment plan or TTP, you are giving an impression to your creditor that you can’t make large payments on your debt. Though they may resort to taking legal matters, the court may hinder to order you to pay something you cannot afford.
The bottom line is dealing with the form that you receive and not ignoring your debt. It is important to comply and communicate the matter to your creditor and the court.
How can CCJ impact me?
People usually ask how long a CCJ lasts. Well, this will be evident on your credit file for six years. This will affect your creditworthiness, making it hard for you to obtain credit in the future.
Moreover, CCJ can be added on the Register of Judgments, Orders, and Fines within a month. So, once you’re able to get out of debt, you should start repairing your credit.
If I can’t Afford CCJ?
If you cannot bear the arrangements on your CCJ you can apply for an appeal to change the payment terms or consider to set aside CCJ or have it canceled in case determined that there are flaws and lapses leading to it.
Where To Get Advice With CCJ?
Our debt experts will guide you every step of the way and can help you deal with your debts in a more realistic and convenient way.