We explained in the Spring issue of Resolve that huge court fee increases were introduced in April this year. The government is consulting on yet further increases to "ensure that the courts and tribunals are adequately resourced while reducing the overall taxpayer subsidy to HMCTS". The proposed increases cover (i) high value money claims and other civil court fees; (ii) possession claims, general applications in civil proceedings and divorce petitions and (iii) tribunal fees.
The proposed increases to civil court fees (excluding family and tribunal fees) are:
- the cap on fees for issuing money claims to rise to "at a minimum £20,000" (excluding personal injury claims where the cap would remain at £10,000). Currently the fee for money claims worth above £10,000 is 5% of the value of the claim, with a £10,000 cap for claims of £200,000 and above. If the cap is abolished money claims of £400,000 plus will cost at least £20,000 to issue. (The government is also consulting on abolishing the cap altogether, and on fee remissions.)
- a 10% increase for applications for judicial review, for applications for the assessment of costs, for enforcement proceedings and for Court of Appeal fees.
- a 10% increase for claims for a declaration or injunction (or "any other remedy" – non money claims).
- an increase to £100 for without notice applications or applications by consent (a £50 increase) and to £255 for contested applications with a hearing (a £100 increase).
- an increase of £75 to £355 for the fee to commence possession claims in the County Court, (currently £280) and on-line to £325 (currently £250).
Here is the Consultation Paper. The Consultation closes on 15 September 2015.