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Boris Johnson has outstanding court judgement for £535 debt

Written by: Emma Lunn
The bill to an unknown creditor remains ‘unsatisfied’ six months after a court ruling and was discovered by Private Eye magazine.

The magazine found the debt when checking county court judgements (CCJs) which are listed on the Register of Judgments, Orders and Fines.

The CCJ is listed against “Boris Johnson, 10 Downing Street” and dated 26 October 2020, meaning it’s now more than six months overdue. Public records list CCJs but not who the money is owed to, or what it is for.

The debt was incurred on 26 October, shortly after news stories circulated about Johnson’s problems funding the refurbishment of his 11 Downing Street flat.

The prime minister receives an annual public grant of £30,000 to spend on his living quarters. But there has been speculation the final bill came to £200,000 and that party donors contributed to the work.

Johnson and his partner Carrie Symonds live at number 11 Downing Street as the property is bigger than the flat at number 10.

The prime minister’s personal finances have repeatedly come under scrutiny of late. His ex-lover Jennifer Arcuri claimed he borrowed £3.10 from her to pay for drinks on a date.

As prime minister, Johnson earns £157,372 a year but he earned a lot more when he was a backbench MP, cashing in on newspaper columns, speeches, book royalties and TV. He is quoted as complaining that he can’t afford a housekeeper or nanny for his young son.

Johnson is not long divorced from Marina Wheeler, a split which was estimated to have cost him £2m. The couple have four children who all went to private schools. He also has a 12-year-old daughter with former fling Helen Macintyre, and a one-year-old son, Wilfred, with fiancé Carrie Symonds.

What is a county court judgement?

A County Court Judgement (CCJ) is a type of court order in England, Wales and Northern Ireland that might be registered against you if you fail to repay money you owe.

In most cases the creditor has made substantial efforts to recover the money before getting a CCJ.

If you ignore a CCJ claim form, the court will still enter a judgement against you. Without evidence the money isn’t owed, it’s likely to enter a judgement where you need to pay off the debt immediately.

If you don’t pay a CCJ as set out by the court, bailiffs can call at your home, a charging order can be secured against your property, or an attachment of earnings order can ask for the money owed to be deducted straight from your wages.

Unless you pay off a CCJ in full within 30 days of receiving the judgment, it will appear on the Register of Judgments, Orders and Fines. It will remain there for six years and show on your credit history for this amount of time too.

A CCJ on your credit record will affect your ability to get a mortgage, a credit card or any other type of credit in the future.

A spokesperson for Johnson was unable to give details of the debt or the circumstances leading up to the court judgement.

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