The government has published its response to the consultation on enhanced fees for divorce proceedings, possession claims, and general applications in civil proceedings.

The response to the consultation, launched by the coalition government in January 2015, confirms that it will:

  • increase the fees for issuing a possession claim in the county court by £75, from £280 to £355;
  • increase the fees for general applications in civil proceedings by £50, from £50 to £100, for an application by consent and by £100, from £155 to £255, for a contested application; and
  • increase the fee for divorce petitions to £550.00 (compared to the £750 in the proposal).

There are also proposals in the consultation on the following:

  • increasing the maximum fee to £20,000;
  • doubling fees in the Immigration and Asylum Chamber;
  • introducing fees in other tribunals; and
  • a general uplift of 10% to a wide range of fees in civil proceedings.

The response says the government is committed to protecting access to justice for all, and will make the remissions scheme more generous. It will increase the amount of disposable capital those who need to pay a larger court fee are allowed to have in order to qualify for remission. It is also considering whether other forms of payment or benefit should be excluded from the disposable capital test. The HMCTS remission scheme will apply across all the courts and tribunals on which it is consulting (with the exception of the Immigration and Asylum Chamber).