The Government has decided that as from 9 March 2015 there is to be an increase in fees for issuing Court proceedings with a value of £10,000 or more. Whilst there have been increases in Court fees over the recent years, this new increase reflects a substantial and significant increase and may prove to be prohibitive for Claimants.
The figures on money claims
As from 9 March 2015, money claims with a value which exceeds £10,000 but which do not exceed £200,000 will have an issue fee of 5% of the value of the claim. If the value of the money claim exceeds £200,000 or is not limited, the fee will be £10,000. If claims are brought by Centre Users or by using Money Claim online, the fee will be 4.5% of the claim if the claim exceeds £10,000 but does not exceed £100,000.
A comparison of the fees is set out below:
|Value of claim||Current issue fee (excluded those issued by using Money Claim online||New fee (excluding those issued by Centre Users or by using Money Claim online)|
|In excess of £300,000 or an unlimited amount||£1,920||£10,000|
The Government is also currently undergoing a consultation for the increase of Possession Claim issue fees by £75, which would increase the current issue fee from £280 to £355.
What should you do now?
Whilst the Law Society reports that it has issued a pre-action letter in anticipation of an application for a judicial review challenging the increase, and has asked the government to provide information on how much money it proposes to raise through the increase and what it will spend the money on, there can be no guarantee that this will prevent the increase from coming into force.
If you are seriously contemplating bringing a claim against someone in the near future, seek legal advice now with a view to issuing your claim before the increases come into effect.
Whilst this is good news for Defendants as litigants may be dissuaded from bringing a new claim as from 9 March 2015, the news is not good for Claimants.
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