Number of judgments fall, while value rises in Jersey in 2018

The number of debt judgments in Jersey fell in 2018 compared to 2017, according to figures released today (February 6) by Registry Trust. However the total value of judgments increased during the same year.

There were 1,492 judgments registered in Jersey during 2018, 14 percent fewer than in 2017. By contrast, 3,489 judgments were registered in 2010.

The number of debt judgments against consumers in 2018 decreased 12 percent to 1,318 and there were 174 business judgments, 22 fewer than the year before.

During 2018, the average value of judgments increased 41 percent to £5,370. The total value of all judgments rose 22 percent from £6.6 million to £8 million.

The average value of consumer judgments in 2018 was £4,456 a rise of 52 percent on 2017, though the median value paints a different picture falling by 14 percent to £371 in 2018.

The median business judgment’s value fell just two percent to £2,166, though the average 2018 judgment value rose 27 percent compared to the 2017 average, to £12,295.

Registry Trust is the non-profit organisation which collects judgment information from jurisdictions throughout the British Isles and Ireland. In Jersey it collects, verifies and makes publicly available judgment records from the petty debts and royal court. A judgment is incontrovertible proof of unmanaged debt.

During 2018, 5.4 percent of Jersey’s judgments were satisfied. This contrasts with 15.3 percent in England and Wales.

Registry Trust deputy chairman, Mick McAteer said “The number of judgments in Jersey continued to fall in 2018. The 2018 number is now well under half the figure we saw in 2010 as we came out of the great financial crisis. But, the total and average value rose suggesting there are still some very large judgments working through the system.”

In 2018 Registry Trust received 29,953 requests to search the register for Jersey online at www.trustonline.org.uk. TrustOnline allows anyone to search for judgments and similar information registered against consumers and businesses in any jurisdiction across the British Isles and Ireland. “We have upgraded TrustOnline to make it mobile friendly,” said Mr McAteer. “It is now cheap, quick and efficient to enquire about whoever you transact with. If there’s a judgment on their record, think twice.”