Civil Judgements for Debt Rise 15.1% in April 2024, Stats SA Reports

  • Increase in Civil Judgements: April 2024 saw a 15.1% surge in civil judgements for debt compared to previous months.
  • Economic Impact: The rise reflects ongoing economic challenges and financial strain faced by individuals and businesses.
  • Stats SA Data: Data from Stats SA highlights the significant impact of debt and financial pressures on society.

Court Orders Sole Member

Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) released its preliminary report on the statistics of civil cases for debt for April 2024. The data, published under the code P0041, highlights significant trends and changes in the civil debt landscape compared to the same period last year.

The report reveals a mixed landscape in the issuance and recording of civil summonses and judgements. Notably, the number of civil summonses issued for debt decreased by 7.0% in the three months ending April 2024, compared to the same period in 2023. The decline was mainly driven by decreases in summonses related to money lent, which contributed -5.5 percentage points to the overall decline, and promissory notes, contributing -2.4 percentage points.

Conversely, the total number of civil judgements recorded for debt saw an increase of 4.0% over the same comparative period. This rise was primarily fueled by judgements related to services and rent, which contributed 7.3 and 1.9 percentage points respectively. These figures suggest a growing trend in legal actions related to service debts.

Moreover, the report indicates a notable increase in the value of civil judgements for debt, which surged by 7.3% from February to April 2024 compared to the same period in the previous year. Key contributors to this rise include services, which added 5.8 percentage points, and other debts, adding 1.9 percentage points.

In April 2024 alone, Stats SA recorded 11,699 civil judgements for debt, amounting to R326.2 million. The most significant contributors to this total value were money lent (R87.0 million), other debts (R71.5 million), and services (R70.6 million).

Provincial Insights

The report provides a provincial breakdown of civil summonses and judgements. Gauteng led in the number of civil summonses issued, with 12,262 cases in April 2024, followed by Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal with 9,195 and 6,885 cases, respectively. In terms of civil judgements, Gauteng again topped the list with 3,409 cases, while Western Cape recorded 2,701, and KwaZulu-Natal 1,156 cases.

Summary of Key Figures for April 2024

  • Civil Summonses Issued for Debt: 39,787 (13.0% increase from April 2023)
  • Civil Judgements Recorded for Debt: 11,699 (15.1% increase from April 2023)
  • Value of Civil Judgements: R326.2 million (24.1% increase from April 2023)

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