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The number of decrees and total amount of debt registered against Scottish consumers saw large rises in the second quarter of 2021 (Q1 2021) compared to the same period last year, according to figures released today (27.07.2021) by Registry Trust.

The number rose from 1,419 to 3,991 in Q2 2021, a rise of 181 percent from Q2 2020. The total value saw a similar rise, an increase of 170 percent from £4.5 million to £12.1 million. The average value fell slightly, down four percent from £3,175 to £3,044. The median value rose by 17 percent, from £1,537 to £1,800.

The number of decrees against Scottish businesses also rose, but not by as much as consumer decrees, up 36 percent from 268 to 365. The total value actually fell by nearly one-third from just under £2 million to £1.4 million. As a result, the average value halved, falling from £7,455 to £3,714. However, the median value rose by 32 percent from £1,500 to £1,977. This suggests there were fewer very large judgments and fewer smaller judgments.

The number of decrees against incorporated businesses increased by 40 percent, from 222 to 312. The total value rose slightly, up two percent from £1.17 million to £1.2 million. The average value declined by over one quarter, 27 percent, from £5,284 to £3,833. The median value rose by 42 percent from £1,402 to £1,988.

Decrees against smaller businesses also rose, from 46 to 53, an increase of 15 percent. The total value saw a large fall of 80 percent £824,891 to £159,634. As a result, the average value saw a similar large drop of 83 percent from £17,932 to £3,012. The median value fell by 23 percent from £2,313 to £1,779.

Trust chair Mick McAteer said: “We saw a large rise in the number and value of decrees recorded against Scottish consumers in this quarter compared to the same period last year. At that time, interventions by government and regulators, and forbearance by creditors, in response to the Covid crisis had kept judgment numbers at historically low levels. But, as these measures were wound down, numbers began to rise again. The Covid economic crisis is far from over for financially vulnerable households.”

- Ends –

Q2 2020 Q2 2021 Change (compared with 2020)
Decrees against consumers
volume 1,419 3,991 181.25%
total value £4,505,132 £12,148,150 169.65%
average* value £3,175 £3,044 -4.12%
median value £1,537 £1,800 17.11%
Decrees against all businesses
volume 268 365 36.19%
total value £1,997,940 £1,355,471 -32.15%
average* value £7,455 £3,714 -50.18%
median value £1,500 £1,977 31.80%
Decrees against incorporated businesses
volume 222 312 40.54%
total value £1,173,049 £1,195,837 1.94%
average* value £5,284 £3,833 -27.46%
median value £1,402 £1,988 41.81%
Decrees against unincorporated businesses
volume 46 53 15.23%
total value £824,891 £159,634 -80.65%
average* value £17,932 £3,012 -83.20%
median value £2,313 £1,779 -23.08%
volume 236 330 39.83%
total value £998,219 £776,409 22.22%
average* value £4,230 £2,353 -44.38%
median value £1,460 £1,264 -13.46%

For more information please contact

0207 391 7287

Notes for editors

Registry Trust is a non-profit company established in 1985 to become the Registrar of County Court Judgments. Registry Trust holds a public register of Scottish decrees. By agreement with the Scottish Courts Administration Service it collects details of undefended money decrees entered in the small claims, summary and ordinary cause sheriffs’ courts in Scotland.

Decrees are removed from the register if paid in full within one calendar month of the issue date and Registry Trust is informed, but will otherwise remain registered for six years. If fully paid outside the one calendar month, defendants can apply to Registry Trust to have the record marked as ‘satisfied’ to improve their credit rating.

Anyone may search for entries against a named person or business at a stated address or a corporate body in the British Isles and the Republic of Ireland by visiting Registry Trust’s website or by writing to Registry Trust, 153–157 Cleveland Street, London W1T 6QW.

To view the full set of statistics, visit