Simon Steele-Williams - Partner, Coles Miller

Fighting Back After Huge Hike In Civil Court Fees24th Mar 2015

There are a number of adjectives that could be applied to the Government’s decision to raise civil court fees by up to 600 per cent.Simon Steele-Williams - Partner, Coles Miller

‘Fair’ is not one of them.

Especially as the people of this country were given only three and a half days’ notice from approval to the new fees going live. Not Parliament’s finest hour.

Anyone with a claim of £10,000 or more now faces a fee of five per cent – up to a maximum £10,000.

So the cost of a £100,000 claim has risen from £1,115 to £5,000.

And if you think this massive hike in court fees doesn’t affect you, think again.

At some point, everybody thinks about turning to the courts for justice: monies owed, disputes over shoddy or defective goods, business or personal contract terms, boundaries. Sooner or later this fee increase could hit you hard.

In short, you may be forced to take legal action over a problem that was not of your making.

And in a civilised society, justice should be available to you.

Justice for a rich few is not justice – the Magna Carta enshrined that principle in law precisely 800 years ago.

That the Government should trample on this fundamental right in the very year we are celebrating the Magna Carta is a bitter irony.

So what can you do about it? Simple – by using mediation, arbitration or other forms of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) to try to avoid going to court.

Mediation tends to be associated predominantly with the family courts.

But mediation can also be applied to the commercial sector – or other litigants – and the Government’s massive hike in civil court fees will inevitably fuel demand for that.

Want justice at a price you can actually afford? Instruct solicitors with a long and proven track record advising on mediation, collaborative law and other forms of ADR.

Do not let the Government price you out of justice – contact Coles Miller Partner Simon Steele-Williams for expert help, 01202 293226.

This document is not intended to constitute and should not be used as a substitute for legal advice on any specific matter. No liability for the accuracy of the content of this document, or the consequences of relying on it, is assumed by the author. If you seek further information, please contact Managing Partner Neil Andrews at Coles Miller Solicitors LLP.