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County Court judgment (CCJ)

i The advice on this page applies to residents in England and Wales only.

How to set aside a County Court judgment (CCJ)

Cancelling a CCJ is known as 'setting aside a CCJ'. Return a N244 form to the court to apply.

A County Court judgment is a court order to repay a debt. You may be able to get it set aside if:

  • You did not know about the CCJ
  • The creditor did not follow the right process to apply

This usually only happens if you have a good reason.

  • There is a fee to do this
  • You have to pay this fee even if you are not successful

When a CCJ is set aside, it is removed from your credit history.

Setting aside only cancels the judgment. It does not:

  • Make the debt disappear
  • Always stop court action

After the CCJ is set aside:

  • You and the creditor go back to where you were before the CCJ
  • This gives you a second chance to object to the claim

signpost iconFind out more about N244 County Court form here.

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What reasons can you use to set aside a CCJ?

I did not get chance to respond to the claim form because:

  • It went to an old address
  • Problems with the post meant I did not get the form
I responded to the claim form but the creditor:
  • Ignored what I said
  • Asked for a judgment too early

I do not have to pay this because:

  • The debt was paid in full before the judgment was raised
  • The debt is statute barred
  • The creditor did not give me the information I asked for
  • This means they are not complying with the Consumer Credit Act

Information on the claim is wrong:

  • The debt details are wrong
  • The amount owed is wrong

signpost iconWorried about a CCJ or other debts? Answer a few quick questions to get the right help.

What happens if my application is rejected?

The judge will make another judgment.

  • It will probably be the same amount as before
  • It is not likely they would review or change the whole claim
  • This puts you back where you started

There might be a second hearing if the case is complicated.

Can I set aside a CCJ if I did not know about it?

You might have found out about it when:

  • You checked your credit score
  • You were turned down for new credit
  • A bailiff contacted you

Not knowing about a CCJ is not a good enough reason to set it aside.

  • The judge will check that you are the person who owes the money
  • You have to pay unless you have a better defence

Read our guide to finding out who you owe money to.

If you cannot afford the CCJ, ask the court if you can pay in stages.

Find out more about how to pay a CCJ.

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Do I have to attend court?

Yes, in most cases you will have to attend a court hearing.

  • This should be at your local hearing centre
  • The court will let you know where and when it is

A hearing is often in a private room, not a courtroom.

The only people there will be:

  • You
  • A judge
  • Maybe someone sent by the creditor

The judge is impartial and will decide a fair outcome.

At the hearing:

  • The judge will look at your defence
  • They do not make a final decision yet

The case then follows the normal CCJ process. You have to use the N9a Claims pack.

Find out more about court action in England and Wales.

Can I remove a CCJ from my credit file?

Yes. If you pay it in full within a month of the judgment.

If you pay your CCJ within a month of the judgment

You need to apply for a ‘certificate of cancellation’ from the County Court that issued the judgment.

  • Fill out and send the court form N443 Application
  • Send proof of payment
  • Pay a £14 fee
  • You may be able to get this for free if you are on a low income
  • Get help with court fees

Once the court has everything, they tell the Registry Trust to remove the judgment from the public register.

If you pay off the CCJ more than a month after the judgment

You cannot remove it. It will stay on your file for six years.

You can apply to the court for a ‘certificate of satisfaction’ if you do pay it off.

  • Use the same process as above
  • This shows the CCJ has been paid

This might make it easier to apply for credit before the CCJ drops off your credit file.

Read our guide to CCJs and credit files.

When does a County Court judgment become statute barred?

'Statute barred' means that a debt was taken out a long time ago.

This means you may not have to pay it any more.

A CCJ is never fully statute barred.

If you think the CCJ was ordered after the six year limitation period:

  • Ask the court to set aside the CCJ

Find out more about statute barred debt.

Get help with County Court judgments and other debts

We can help if you received a CCJ and don't know what to do.

Take two minutes to answer a few simple questions, so we can find the best help for you.

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