Call for fresh approach to debt satisfactions in Scotland

20th October 2016

Only 4% of decrees and judgments relating to debt in Scotland were marked as satisfied in the third quarter of 2016, compared with 15% in England and Wales, according to figures from Registry Trust.

Registry Trust is the non-profit organisation which collects judgment information from jurisdictions across the UK, including small claims and summary causes and ordinary cause decrees in Scotland.

Calling for a fresh approach to satisfactions in Scotland, Trust chairman Malcolm Hurlston CBE said: “Behaviour cannot explain the yawning gap. In Scotland it lies with consumers to notify us if a debt is satisfied and it would seem many are failing to do so. It is to their detriment but lenders too would benefit from more accurate information if satisfaction data were kept up to date.

“We are starting discussions with lender organisations to see how we can solve the problem together. Meanwhile, people who pay off debts should remember to register it with us and reap the reward, quite probably in a lower cost of credit. Let’s get Scotland satisfied.”

The Trust’s statistics show that 5,398 judgments were recorded against consumers in Q3 2016, a year on year decrease of 12%. The total value fell 12 % (to £14.8million), and the average value of a judgment remained unchanged at £2,746.

The overall decrease in the number of judgments was almost entirely attributable to a 13% fall in small claims and summary causes. There was only one fewer ordinary cause decree in Q3 2016 compared with the same period last year. The average value of a small claims judgment was £1,543, a 7% rise and the highest on record. Meanwhile, the average value of an ordinary cause decree fell 16% to £13,957.

In Q3 2016 Registry Trust received 7,821 requests.