What is a CCJ? Read this practical guide

Even if you are living your life in the black these days, having a poor credit history, or a background of financial ups and downs (even a CCJ), can mean that getting car finance can feel nigh on impossible.

A CCJ? What’s that?

A CCJ is a County Court Judgement: a type of court order, basically. For those who default on payments of some kind, a CCJ sets out how the repayments must be made. Every year in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, thousands of people are given a CCJ.  The only way to avoid one entering your credit record is to make a full repayment of monies owed within 30 days of when the judgement was issued. But, how many of us can realistically do that if we’re financially struggling  – going through a rough patch and need to be given time to sort things out before getting back on our feet again money-wise?

An ordinary street

This is something Emma in Rickmansworth discovered in January after trying to arrange a car loan with a financing company in her local area:

Before I discovered that car finance even with a poor credit background was still a possibility, I had a heck of a job securing vehicle financing,” explains Emma. “My problem? Having a CCJ on my record. It really meant I was up against it, not only when it came to becoming a motorist, but whenever I tried to apply for anything at all. At least, that’s how it all seemed to me.

“It’s a car loan, not the Philosopher’s Stone!”

Pull out the stops to pay your CCJ on time!

Once other vehicle finance companies saw a CCJ on my credit record, they refused to help me,” explains Nathan in Chorley Wood, Hertfordshire. “The thing is, it remains on your record for six years.  I feel very sorry for people with CCJs who are in a worse position than me. I mean, some can’t even get a bank account. Imagine that.

My advice to anyone landed with a CCJ is to pull out all the stops to repay the money they’ve defaulted on within 30 days of the court order being made,” urges Paula in Slough. “I know that may seem like the impossible job, but not doing so means you can end up in a very difficult position. I have been without a car now for three years, due to having a CCJ on my credit record.

A Certificate of Satisfaction

If you are able to meet the 30-day deadline for repayment, you will then be issued with a Certificate of Satisfaction. Only by having the Certificate can the CCJ be removed from your file.

Don’t be denied

If you’re having trouble getting car finance, even if you have no CCJs on your file, don’t lose hope. Driving away a car you really like and enjoying the freedom of the road again may come sooner than you think. Even if you have fallen behind with your mortgage payments; lost your job and so are surviving on State Benefits; have had to go self-employed due to a lack of suitable opportunities in the jobs market; or are simply unable to meet the stringent criteria set out by so many other (maddeningly unrealistic and equally unhelpful) car finance companies out there, see how easy the process for getting car finance is and you’ll see light at the end of the tunnel!

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