There was a 12 percent increase in the number of county court judgments against all businesses in England and Wales in the first quarter of 2019, according to figures released by the Registry Trust. The total value of the 35,779 business CCJs was £107.2million, a rise of six percent compared to the same period of 2018.

Year-on-year numbers and values have risen for the past three years and in the first quarter of 2019 are 63 and 38 percent higher than 2016’s record Q1 lows of 21,860 and £77.7million.

The average value of an adverse business CCJ in Q1 2019 was £2,997, five percent lower than Q1 2018. The median value at £933 was eight percent lower.

The number of CCJs against incorporated businesses rose by 12 percent to 27,064, in Q1 2019 compared to the same quarter of 2018. The total value increased by 16 percent to £82.3million. The average value of a CCJ against companies increased by four percent compared to Q1 2018, to £3,042. However, the median value fell six percent to £902.

In the first quarter of 2019, the total number of CCJs against generally smaller unincorporated businesses at 8,715 was up 11 percent from 2018’s record Q1 low of 7,847, bucking a nine year downward trend. However the total value of CCJs against unincorporated businesses dropped by 19 percent to £24.9million, compared to the same quarter of last year. The average value for unincorporated businesses fell 27 percent to £2,857, though the median increased by seven percent to £1,222.

In the High Court 16 judgments were issued against businesses in the first quarter of 2019, four fewer than in the same quarter of last year. The total value of High Court judgments was £7.1million, a rise of 35 percent on 2018’s record Q1 low of £5.3million.

Mick McAteer, deputy chairman of Registry Trust said: “Business judgment data is an important indicator of the state of the economy. The number and value of judgments have risen for the third year in a row. But, it is worth noting that these levels are still well below the peaks seen just after the financial crisis in 2009.”

Statistics

Q1 2018 Q1 2019 Change (compared with Q1 2018) notes
CCJs against all businesses  
volume 32,003 35,779 +12%
total value £101.2m £107.2m +6%
Average* value £3,164 £2,997 -5%
median £1,013 £933 -8%
CCJs against incorporated businesses  
volume 24,156 27,064 +12%
total value £70.7m £82.3m +16%
Average* value £2,927 £3,042 +4%
median £958 £902 -6%
CCJs against unincorporated businesses  
volume 7,847

[record low]

8,715 +11%
total value £30.6m £24.9m -19%
Average* value £3,894 £2,857 -27%
median £1,145 £1,222 +7%
High Court judgments against all businesses  
volume 20 16 down four
total value £5.3m

[record low]

£7.1m +35% 2019 figure includes single judgment of £4.7m
Average* value £264,500 £445,940 +69% 2019 figure includes single judgment of £4.7m
median £8,170 £27,216 +233% 2019 figure includes single judgment of £4.7m

* Average value refers to the ‘mean’. The mean average tends to be higher than the median, as it is more likely to be distorted by outlying, high value cases.