Significant rise in CCJs against UK & Ireland businesses in Q1 2022

Registry Trust, the not-for-profit organisation which maintains the Register of Judgments, Orders and Fines for the UK & Ireland, has released Q1 2022 monetary judgment statistics.

There were 230,239 new monetary judgements processed overall in Q1 2022, which is a 10% decrease compared to the Q1 2021 total of 256,404. However, there was a significant rise in county court judgments (CCJs) against businesses.

In England & Wales, the total number of commercial CCJs increased from 15,2010 in Q1 2021 to 29,705 in Q1 2022, with the value of CCJ debt owed by businesses up 33% from £79 million in Q1 2021 to £105 million in Q1 2022. The most significant increase of 129% was seen amongst larger incorporated businesses.

Scotland saw nearly a 52% increase in decrees (CCJ equivalent) against businesses in Q1 2022 compared to Q1 2021. The total value of these judgments increased significantly by 269% from just under £2.1 million to £8 million. Northern Ireland recorded a total of 179 debt judgments in Q1 2022 compared to 152 in Q1 2021, an increase of 18%. However, the value of Northern Irish business debt judgments decreased by 15% from £4,552 in Q1 2021 to Q1 2022 £3,873.

Judgments against businesses in the Republic of Ireland rose by 24% in Q1 2022 compared to Q1 2021, with the total value of judgments against businesses falling by 2%. Jersey recorded a 68% increase in judgments against businesses in Q1 2022 compared to Q1 2021, whilst judgments against businesses in Isle of Man saw an increase from 3 in Q1 2021 to 12 in Q1 2022.

Conversely, the number of High Court Judgments against businesses in England & Wales fell by 13% in Q1 2022 compared to Q1 2021 with total value decreasing sharply by 81% from £98 million. The small number of High Court Judgments means these figures are subject to large fluctuations.

Registry Trust’s CEO, Lex Jones, said: “The increase in debt judgments against large and small businesses across the UK & Ireland is compelling. This reflects the very serious challenges that businesses are facing in the current economic climate. As our analysis in September 2021 showed, outstanding commercial CCJs act as a ‘warning sign’ for insolvency, suggesting that timely intervention is required. The trend we are seeing is likely to continue without further financial support being made available.”