The idea of Coronavirus being a class issue continues to circulate the media (see this recent article in The Times), with COVID-19 appearing to have a more drastic impact on the poor both health-wise and wealth-wise. While a proportion of the population is managing to save additional money, many others are finding themselves falling into more substantial money troubles than pre-COVID, which in turn could increase their likelihood of negative effects from the disease.
Of course nobody wants to catch coronavirus, but the lifestyles of some mean they at greater risk of being infected. The employment demands of shop workers, leisure centre workers or teachers mean they are unable to work from home. To travel to work they might use public transport if access to a car is unaffordable. While at work they may circulate with a larger volume of potentially infected individuals, while touching surfaces that are used by many.
Here at Registry Trust, we maintain the UK’s official statutory Registers of Judgments, Orders and Fines and as a Data Analyst, I have been looking for different trends associated with the impact of Covid-19 on the monetary judgment statistics we product. I thought it would be particularly interesting to assess this hypothesis of Covid-19 deaths being related to class/wealth by investigating the correlation between Covid-related deaths and rates of indebtedness, at a regional level, between March and October of 2020. All results were taken as per 10,000 of the population to prevent any interpretation being skewed by population density.
The chart below shows the distinct correlation between regions of high indebtedness and high rate of Covid-19 deaths. This study assumes that regions with higher judgment rates, thus higher rates of indebtedness, have reduced financial stability. As a result, Registry Trust judgment data reinforces the notion that deaths related to Covid-19 are the greatest concern for individuals in the least affluent regions.
The chart shows the highest number of Covid-19 related deaths between Match and October 2020 to be in the North West (9 per 10,000 of the population). Obesity rates are also comparatively higher in the North West than the rest of England. With obesity increasing an individual’s susceptibility, this is likely to have facilitated the high number of Covid-19 deaths.
The lowest number of Covid-19 deaths is in the South West (2 per 10,000 of the population). However even in these less affected regions, it is possible the less affluent remain at the greatest risk of contracting the disease.
The chart shows the highest number of judgments to be in the North West (103 per 10,000 of the population) and the lowest number of judgments to be in the Midlands (48 per 10,000 of the population).
It appears that the Midlands is the only region that does not correlate with the trend of increased indebtedness and increased Covid-19 deaths. Characterised by high Covid-19 deaths (7 per 10,000 of the population) yet relatively low judgment rates (48 per 10,000 of the population), the exact reason for this is unknown, but could be attributed to less judgments being processed in the Midlands during the national lockdown period.
This blog reinforces the need for individuals and businesses to become economically stable, as the impacts now appear to extend far beyond financial strain alone. Having a judgment against you can prevent further lending of money, such as for mortgages or credit cards, thus can increase the levels of financial pressure placed on an individual or business.
If you have a County Court Judgment (CCJ) against you that is owed, it is important to pay it if possible. You can check judgments against a person or business via our public website www.trustonline.org.uk. Once a CCJ debt has been paid, in order for the judgment to be satisfied on the register (or cancelled due to it being paid within one month), additional steps must be taken by the defendant to evidence the payment. Likewise, if you believe that the judgment should be set aside, evidence must be provided for why. There is useful information about all of this and more in the Help Topics section of the TrustOnline website.