Debt judgments down £85m due to lower lending
The value of debt judgments against businesses in England and Wales fell by £85m last year according to the latest statistics from Registry Trust.
Registry Trust is the non-profit organisation which collects judgment information throughout the United Kingdom and Ireland. In England and Wales it runs the Register of Judgments Orders and Fines for the Ministry of Justice.
Last year businesses in England and Wales faced judgments to the value of £507m compared to £592m in the previous year, a 14.4 percent decrease.
In all 122,900 judgments were issued against businesses in 2012, 17,600 fewer than were issued in 2011, representing a 12.5 percent fall from the total of 140,500 recorded in 2011.
Over the longer term, the number of judgments against businesses has fallen 40 percent from 207,100 in 2009. The picture is mirrored by insolvency statistics, which show the number of company insolvencies has fallen from 19,078 in 2009 to 16,138 in 2012, a 15.4 percent fall.
Registry Trust’s website – trustonline.org.uk - is the only place where the public can access judgment information for England and Wales, as well as other jurisdictions across the British Isles.
In 2012 the website received a record 209,699 searches from the public. In addition the judgment data is sent in bulk to credit reference agencies and used through them by banks, credit card companies and mortgage providers to assess creditworthiness.
Announcing the statistics, Registry Trust chairman, Malcolm Hurlston CBE, said: “Our statistics show that fewer businesses are facing court debts. When looked at together with the number of company insolvencies which have also fallen year-on-year, you might think this was cause for celebration as businesses have been able to repay their debts.
“However, this reduction probably reflects the lower level of lending to business over recent years.”