Frequently asked questions

What are the possible credit scores?

Stability score icon Very high credit score

Though no business is without risk, businesses with this rating are considered highly likely to be able to meet their commitments in the foreseeable future.

Stability score icon High credit score

Though no business is without risk, businesses with this rating are generally considered likely to meet their commitments in the foreseeable future.

Stability score icon Higher than average credit score

Businesses in this category show average risk characteristics, with a slightly higher than average likelihood of being able to meet their commitments in the foreseeable future.

Stability score icon Lower than average credit score

Businesses in this category show average risk characteristics, with a slightly lower than average likelihood of being able to meet their commitments in the foreseeable future. You may want to check other sources of data such as customer references before extending significant credit.

Stability score icon Low credit score

Businesses in this category show slightly above average risk characteristics, with a lower than average likelihood of being able to meet their commitments in the foreseeable future. You may want to check other sources of data such as customer references before extending significant credit.

Stability score icon Very low credit score

Businesses in this category show above average risk characteristics, with a lower than average likelihood of being able to meet their commitments in the foreseeable future. We recommend that you should check other sources of data such as customer references before extending significant credit.

Stability score icon Technically Insolvent

According to the last set of accounts filed at Companies House, the company has negative net assets. Many businesses continue to trade and can pay their debts while technically insolvent.

Serious Gazette Code Present

Businesses in this category have a serious gazette code present, for example a striking off notice.

Dormant business

There is no credit score for businesses in this category because they are classified as Dormant by Companies House.

Not calculated

There is no credit score for businesses in this category because they are technically insolvent according to last filed accounts. Whilst many businesses operate perfectly well while accounts are insolvent we recommend some caution is practiced before extending significant credit.

New business

There is no credit score for businesses in this category because they are not yet due to file their first set of accounts with Companies House.

Late accounts

There is no credit score for businesses in this category because they are late filing their accounts with Companies House.

Not calculated

There is no credit score for businesses in this category because there isn’t enough information to calculate a score.

Not trading

There is no credit score for businesses in this category because they are classified as Not Trading by companies house.

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What are the possible risk scores?

Hidden risk rating stars Below average risk score

Though no business is without risk, those in this category exhibit fewer signs of the activities or behaviours which can be signs of risks.

Hidden risk rating stars Average risk score

Businesses in this category exhibit average levels of the activities or behaviours which can be signs of risks.

Hidden risk rating stars Above average risk score

Businesses in this category exhibit more of the activities or behaviours that can be signs of risks. Smaller companies may fall into this category due to a lack of available information.

Not calculated

The risk score has not been calculated for businesses in this category.

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How is the credit score calculated?

The credit score is based on expert analysis of a range of factors such as age, size, sector and location, as well as specific information sources such as Companies House. It is important to appreciate that no business is without risk, so these scores represent only broad categories based on information available. It is also important to note that a lack of information can result in a lower credit score.

As such, these scores should not be the sole basis for significant business decisions, and you may want to request other information directly such as supplier references or recent accounts. You can read more in our terms and conditions

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What is the credit score telling me?

The credit score is an indicator of the likelihood that a business will be able to meet its commitments.

It is commonly used in assessing if or how much credit to extend to a new trading partner.

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Why does the credit score matter?

Every year in the UK approximately 20,000 businesses become insolvent and many more cease to trade for other reasons. The credit score is one of many tools you can use to determine if you feel comfortable extending credit to businesses who buy your goods or services.

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How is the risk score calculated?

The risk score is based on expert analysis of 49 potential indicators of risk that may not be obvious when just relying on information from accounts. These 49 indicators have been selected from an in-depth analysis of over 400 individual cases where businesses with seemingly good credit scores suddenly dissolved. Indicators include directors’ involvement in past insolvencies, director disqualifications, the audit status of the business, trade references, CCJs and direct investigation of the business. An above average risk score does not mean that any specific information has been found on the business in question.

These scores should not be the sole basis for significant business decisions, and you may want to request other information directly such as supplier references or recent accounts. You can read more in our terms and conditions

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What is the risk score telling me?

The risk score is an indicator of risk not evident from the accounts of the company. It is based on an analysis of other data sources.

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Why does the risk score matter?

The risk score is an additional piece of data you can use to assess if or how much credit to extend to a new trading partner.

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Why does it say 'This company may have outstanding CCJs'?

We are only able to display information on County Court Judgements (CCJs) to CheckBusiness Pro users. If you are not logged in to a CheckBusiness Pro account, the text 'this company may have outstanding CCJs' will be displayed by all companies. In order to find out if the company in question actually has outstanding CCJs or not you will need to register for a Pro account and then 'follow' the company in question.

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Why is some of the information I want to see missing?

There are a few possible reasons for this. Not every company is required to file the same amount of public information; for example most smaller companies will only file abbreviated accounts. We also make additional information available to our registered users, and to our Pro customers. Have a look at our Pricing and Plans page for more information.

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How can I get you to correct or update information?

Check Business displays information taken from official public records such as Companies House. This includes registered address and information on Directors. We cannot amend or remove information which is published by Companies House - please contact them directly to have this changed at source.

Some of the information displayed on Check Business comes from other sources such as directory listings. We and our data provider, Equifax, are more than happy to update these records if they are incorrect or if you wish to add more information to promote your business. The easiest way to correct this is to create a free account and follow the 'claim my business' proceedure, which will correct the information in our database directly.

If you have any other questions regarding incorrect information, please contact support@check-business.co.uk.

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My company is no longer trading. Why are you displaying it?

We display all businesses who have records in Companies House and this includes dormant and dissolved businesses as well as those that are actively trading.

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I’d like my data to be removed from Check Business.

Check Business displays information taken from official public records such as Companies House. You cannot remove your data from these records and therefore cannot remove it from Check Business. If you have concerns about personal data appearing on Check Business such as your home address we suggest you contact Companies House and file form CH01 to amend this directly at the source. Companies House also has a number of mechanisms available to restrict the availability of Director's information if there is a risk of fraud.

Although you cannot remove data from Check Business we can help you hide it from search engines. Follow the claim my business procedure to prove your identity and then choose 'Hide from search engines' from the Dashboard. It will still be possible to find the data by searching directly on Check Business.

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Why do I have to create a free account and claim my business before you will correct information?

In order to prevent malicious changes to a company profile (for example, instructing search engines to hide the business page) we and our data provider, Equifax, need to verify your identity and establish that you have the permission of the business concerned before we can make changes to the profile. Creating a free account and following the claim my business procedure allows us to do that.

If you have any questions regarding this, please contact support@check-business.co.uk.

How can I improve my business’s credit score?

The first step in improving your credit score is to keep an eye on it. If you haven’t already, make sure you follow your own business so you’ll receive monitoring alerts.

Second, consider how you behave as a business. Do you pay your bills on time? In particular how you pay larger companies like utilities and telcos can have an impact on your credit score so make sure you stick to terms. Do you have any outstanding CCJs? Make it a habit to settle CCJs within one month to ensure they are not kept on record.

Third, be open and file as much financial data as possible. If there’s insufficient information about your business it can be difficult to analyse. Often the same rating is given to businesses with poor credit history as those with no credit history. This is simply telling consumers and other businesses to beware since there isn’t enough information available to give an informed score.

Fourth, do your research. Before you appoint a new director you should investigate their history as it will have a bearing on your company’s credit score.

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If I connect my sales ledger what happens to this data?

Any data from your sales ledger remains wholly your data; it is not shared with any third party. For more information, please see our privacy policy.

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Why can I only follow three businesses?

You can follow as many businesses as you like when you upgrade to Pro for just £25 per month.

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Can I cancel or upgrade my subscription?

Yes, you can cancel or upgrade at any time.

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Are you adding any other accounting packages to your supported software list?

Yes, we continue to work with software providers to add new integrations. If you are a registered or Pro customer of Check Business we’ll be sure to notify you when we add new integrations. Sign up here

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What's more important - the Credit Score or the Risk Score?

Both scores are equally important but must be taken in context with some common sense applied.

For example, if you have a relatively new company with what seems like a fantastic credit score and only a few directors but a poor risk score you might want to carry out further investigations before doing business with them.

This is because newer businesses by their very nature tend to have lower credit scores since there isn't normally sufficient historical data to forecast high credit scores. In this example it's the combination of a new business, a fantastic credit score and a poor risk score that together would suggest it's worthwhile to investigate further.

If you have concerns ask for more details from the director about any past companies they have been involved with.

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Where does your data come from?

The data on Check Business is powered by Equifax. Equifax is a global leader in consumer, commercial and workforce information solutions that provide businesses of all sizes and consumers with insight and information they can trust. Equifax organizes and assimilates data on more than 500 million consumers and 81 million businesses worldwide. The company’s significant investments in differentiated data, its expertise in advanced analytics to explore and develop new multi-source data solutions, and its leading-edge proprietary technology enable it to create and deliver unparalleled customized insights that enrich both the performance of businesses and the lives of consumers.

Headquartered in Atlanta, Equifax operates or has investments in 18 countries and is a member of Standard & Poor's (S&P) 500® Index. Its common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the symbol EFX. In 2013, Equifax was named a Bloomberg BusinessWeek Top 50 company, was #3 in Fortune's Most Admired list in its category, and was named to InfoWeek 500 as well as the FinTech 100.

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