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Help please - numerous questions - setting aside CCJ, living abroad and mortgage shor

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Hi, I'm hoping someone may be able to help me?

I've been lurking on here for ages but just need a little bit of guidance on my present situation..

 

We left for Australia in 2011,

leaving lots of debts,

 

initially with the intention of paying them once settled here but due to the high cost of living this has not been possible,

as we are only able to make ends meet, even still.

 

we initially rented out our house in the UK but tenants were scared by debt collectors keep calling and sitting outside,

they kept complaining to the estate agents, who then began asking about our financial situation etc.

 

This with costs of maintenance, negative equity etc we decided to let the house be repossessed.

It has only recently been sold at a shortfall of around £40,000!

 

I checked trust online and there is no CCJ for this but there is one for the same company, which we presume is for a loan we had.

This has only recently been done although we last paid at the beginning of 2011.

 

my husband rang Northampton Court and they advised it has been referred to the local court as they have applied for a charging order.

 

He then rang the local court and it is due to be heard in January.

 

My husband said the lady was really abrupt with him and advised him to ring their solicitors,

Dryden Fairfax.

 

So, questions are ......

 

1. I intend on getting CCJ set aside as we were not resident in the UK at the time.

The bank, although did not have our address abroad had a different address in the UK where we rented prior to emigrating due to job commitments.

 

They obtained the CCJ at the house we owned and left the prior year.

 

2. Can they get a charging order if you do not own a property to use in the future if you ever do purchase one?

We had bank account, loan and mortgage all with the same company,

so I would presume obtaining a CCJ then applying for a charging order,

knowing they have already repossessed the property is a tad naughty, or am I wrong?

 

3. I am aware that with the unsecured debts these cannot be enforced in Australia,

but am a little worried with the large shortfall on ways they may try to enforce in the future.

Can anybody offer any advise please?

 

4. Finally, on the N244, is a few sentences explaining emigrating and therefore not receiving documents sufficient with supporting documents

eg. Passport, air tickets, utility bill or do I need to quote the CPR, or will this just complicate things?

 

Sorry this is a little long winded but so much has happened and we initially intended on never returning,

but now do not see it as a permanent move and will return in a few years,

hence wanting this CCJ removed, as other detrimental credit history should be dated around the be,ginning of 2011.

 

Thank you so much for reading and I look forward to your responses

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1) How are you going to get the set aside ? You or a representative would need to be available for a UK court hearing. If you appoint a Solicitor, I suspect that it will be pretty expensive.

 

2) They can obtain a charging order against any property shown as owned by you on land registry. The charging order is just a way of obtaining payment of a court judgement. But this is not guaranteed unless they obtain any equity on the eventual sale of the property.

 

3) Once a property is sold, any shortfall can be enforced in the UK for up to 12 years. But they would have difficulty in doing this in OZ. From what I have read, some years down the line, they may pass the debt to international debt collectors, many who appear to be based in the US, who make a few phone calls saying they can do all sorts (made up nonsense) to frighten people.

 

4) When completing N244, you would have to think about who would attend any hearing. You can enter that you have been resident in Australia at x address since x date. You just complete the form and you will get a hearing date.

 

You might not get the set aside, as if you have not informed creditors of your new correspondence address, judges often say it is not the creditors problem, so will not grant the set aside. Creditors are only expected to provide to a court when making any claim the last known address provided or they have been able to trace.

 

If I were in your position, I think I would be making it clear to all UK creditors that you are a permanent resident of OZ and have no intention of returning to the UK. If they believe that you are never returning to the UK, they may be willing to accept a full and final settlement offer from you to pay off the debt. A relative of mine paid off a shortfall of about £30k, by paying a one-off lump sum of £2k. If they ever think you are coming back to the UK, they might just wait, as they have up to 12 years to enforce the debt.

 

Think very carefully, before you decide to come back to the UK. If you have to rent a UK house on your return, letting agents will do a credit check and if there are any remaining problems, this may affect you. Unless you have a good job to return to, once you have been out of the UK for 2 years, you do not qualify for any government benefits for 6 months. I have relatives in OZ and it can be difficult to settle. They moved out there when the cost of living was easier to manage, but think about moving within OZ, rather than a move back to the UK. The UK economy is likely to get worse over the next few years, due to continuing problems in the EU and the US now cutting spending.


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1. I intend on getting CCJ set aside as we were not resident in the UK at the time.

The bank, although did not have our address abroad had a different address in the UK where we rented prior to emigrating due to job commitments.

Because you had a business/financial interest (the house) in the UK they could still apply for a CCJ. Theoretically it is possible to apply to have it set-aside but unless you have a reasonable defence such as their claim amount was incorrect you would be unlikely to succeed. Also there is nothing to stop the creditor re-applying for the a CCJ in Oz.

2. Can they get a charging order if you do not own a property to use in the future if you ever do purchase one?
They cannot obtain a charging order until you actually have property to put a charge on.

 

CCJs remain on your UK credit file for six years the same as defaults & then they drop off. A debt becomes Statute Barred after six years if no payment or written acknowledgement is made & cannot be enforced.

 

Although a CCJ never becomes Statute Barred the right to take enforcement does, so if it's not enforced within six years the creditor must apply to a court for permission to do so & this is rarely if ever given.


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Wow, thanks guys for the replies. I thought I had an idea how things work, obviously not! On reading the N244 form, question 5, where it asks how would you like to proceed, I thought if I ticked without a hearing it would just be considered on the details on the form, and therefore would not be required to attend?

 

When they obtained the CCJ they had already repossessed the property, so we therefore had no financial interest - will that make a difference?

 

In your experience, are they likely to obtain a CCJ for the shortfall also, and if so is there a limit on the time they have to obtain this or do they have six years from the default?

 

We have no intention of returning anytime soon, and thought we would stay total of six years but now with this recent CCJ , it will have to be eight total. I am just trying to organise time frames in my head of when we may be able to return so I can organise my plans here accordingly, makes the days when I am homesick easier!

 

I have considered full and final offers, and am currently reading around this.

 

I'm so grateful for your time and help, hopefully I'll be able to get my head around this soon!

 

Thanks

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Mortgage shortfall debts can be enforced in a court in the UK up to 12 years, so yes it might make sense to try to gain acceptance of an F&F offer. For the powers of any CCJ, they have 6 years to enforce any CCJ, but can go back to court to extend, although apparently not often granted. The current CCJ is probably for the loan they gave. They could try to enforce the debt for the mortgage. There have been cases on here where companies have waited 10 years before trying to enforce mortgage shortfall debts, but they will have sent correspondence before asking for payment. It is a requirement under the CML handbook for mortgage companies to correspond with customers regarding debts. If they failed to issue any correspondence for 6 years, under CML they should write it off, so they will chase, but not necessarily go for a CCJ.

 

In your position, you would be wise to make the creditors aware of your Aussie address. Some people choose to send by international registered post, just to confirm to the company you are abroad and for you to have proof of advising them. Once they know you are abroad, it complicates matters for them, as they should then know that CCJ type action is not really open to them. When you are abroad and unlikely to return, I think it is more likley they will accept an F&F offer, especially if you point to any financial difficulty you are having in Australia.

 

I think it is possible that they were legally correct in obtaining a CCJ in regard to a debt for a property already repossesed. The particulars of the claim would have related to money and nothing to do with property. Depends on what details they gave to the court. You could ask the court to supply details of the court claim that was made and look into it. Presume that there would be a cost to this and complicated by you now living abroad i.e data protection issues.

 

Remember that another option open to creditors is bankruptcy. They can do this in your absence. Hence why it may be a good idea to try for F&F offers and to let them know your address.


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