Monday, 25 July 2016

NOT AGAIN!

There was a time when you were given one or two weeks' advance notice of increases in court or tribunal fees. Then you could rush out to start your case and save a few bob. Not now. The legislation bringing in the latest raft of changes was made last Friday and operates from....today!!!

Most of the increases are above the rate of inflation. In the High Court and county court it will cost the same to start a case. There's just one exception to this which relates to the minority of cases where a specific fee is not otherwise set. It's swingingly called fee 1.5 and is up in the High Court by £48 to £528 and in the county court by £28 to £308. 

Those of you who have obtained a judgment in your favour and are enforcing it in the county court are the principal litigants to be hit. Putting in the bailiff to seize the debtor's  goods will cost £77 instead of £70 in county court business centre and money claim online case and £110 instead of £100 in other cases. Putting in the bailiff to carry out an eviction from premises sees a hike of £11 to £121 (I would have preferred £120 and then I could have remembered the new fee). There's an extra tenner to be paid bringing the fee up to £110 for enforcement by charging order, attachment of earnings or third party debt order. Getting your debtor before the court to answer questions about their finances will set you back by an extra fiver at £55.  There are similar increases in the High Court for enforcement steps and the fee on sealing a High Court writ of control, possession or delivery rises by £6 to £66.

There are other increases for judicial review cases and on enforcement of an award or other decisions by a tribunal and various bodies and on assessment of costs. Certain magistrates'  courts and tribunal fees are also increased but some fees in the first-tier property chamber in England are reduced. Surely some mistake.