With effect from 7 October 2013, the Courts and Tribunals Fee Remissions Order 2013 (SI 2013/2302) comes into force.   This Order introduces a new, standardised fee remissions system for courts and tribunals, including, materially, the Court of Protection (by virtue of paragraph 5 of the 2013 Order and amendments, including the introduction of a new Schedule 2 to, the Court of Protection Fees Order 2007).   In summary:

  1. Eligibility for remission or part remission of a fee will be based on two new tests  - a disposable capital test and a gross monthly income test.  Parties who satisfy the disposable capital test will receive a full fee remission, pay a contribution to the fee or have to pay the fee in full;
  2. The gross monthly income test applies a series of thresholds to single people or couples, with an allowance for the number of dependent children they have. Parties with a gross monthly income below a certain threshold will receive a full fee remission. Parties will be required to pay a contribution of £5 towards their fee for every £10 of gross monthly income they earn over the relevant threshold. Parties with income in excess of £4,000 above the relevant threshold will not be eligible for any remission or part remission of a fee;
  3. The disposable capital and gross monthly income of a partner is to be treated as disposable capital and gross monthly income of the party.  However, where the partner of the party has a contrary interest to the party in the matter to which the fee relates, the disposable capital and gross monthly income of that partner is not treated as the disposable capital and gross monthly income of the party;
  4. Where proceedings are brought concerning the property and affairs of ‘P’, for the purpose of determining  whether a party is entitled to a remission or part remission of a fee:
    1. the disposable capital and gross monthly income of the person bringing those proceedings is not treated as the disposable capital and gross monthly income of the party;
    2. the disposable capital and gross monthly income of ‘P’ is to be treated as the disposable capital of the party; and
    3. the disposable capital and gross monthly income of the  partner of ‘P’, if any, is not treated as the disposable capital and gross monthly income of the party.
  5. Where proceedings are brought concerning the personal welfare of ‘P’, for the purpose of determining whether a party is entitled to a remission or part remission of a fee the disposable capital and gross monthly income of a partner, if any, is not treated as the disposable capital and gross monthly income of the party, where that partner is ‘P’ who is the subject of those proceedings in which the fee is payable;
  6. Where proceedings concern both the property and affairs of ‘P’ and their personal welfare, their disposable capital and gross monthly income shall be treated in accordance with the rules governing property and affairs proceedings.