1. Overview

If someone takes court action against you, saying you owe them money, and you don’t respond, you could get a county court judgment (CCJ) or High Court judgment.

You have 14 days to respond to the court claim.

If you get a judgment, this means that the court has formally decided that you owe the money.

The judgment will come in the post and will explain:

  • how much you owe
  • how you should pay (in full or in instalments)
  • the deadline for paying
  • details of who you need to pay

Records of judgments are kept for 6 years unless you pay the full amount within a month - this can make it hard to get credit.

If you don’t owe the money, you can ask the court to cancel, or ‘set aside’, the judgment.

If you do owe the money, you should arrange to pay what you can afford.

If you get a judgment don’t ignore it - you could be taken back to court and forced to pay.

Court judgments for debt in Scotland

The law is different in Scotland - see guidance from the Accountant in Bankruptcy (Scotland’s insolvency service).

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