Government publishes a response to the consultation on increasing court fees
The Government has now published its response to the consultation on increasing court fees that we reported in our last bulletin. The response acknowledges the overwhelming opposition to the increases but has confirmed that they will be implemented anyway.
- 92% of respondents to the consultation opposed the proposed increase in the court fee for a possession claim. However, this will now increase by £75 from £250 is issued via PCOL and £280 if issued normally.
- 96% of respondents to the consultation opposed the proposed increase in the court fee for an application. However this will now increase from £50 to £100 where made without notice or by consent, and from £155 to £255 where the application is contested.
An application to vary or extend an injunction for protection from harassment or violence will be one of the few exemptions from the fee increases.
When these changes will be implemented is currently unclear because they will need to be approved by statutory instrument which has not yet come before Parliament.
A further consultation has been launched regarding increasing again the upper limit for a court fee for a money claim, and increasing the court fee for a claim for a remedy other than for a claim for the recovery of land. This will be relevant to an application for an injunction for which the issue fee is currently £280 in the Court and £480 in the High Court. The proposal is to increase these fees by 10% to £308 and £528 respectively. The fee for a warrant of possession will also increase from £110 to £121 and an application in the magistrates court (for example for a Closure Order) will increase from £205 to £226.
The Law Society has reacted to these proposals commenting that “these proposals amount to an assault on access to justice and will only serve to widen the access to justice gap in our two tier justice system.”
We will report again once we have more information on when the new proposals for possession claims and applications will come into force and when the government publishes its response to the consultation on further increases.