Alert over doubling in fees for small claims

Freelancers taking court action against a person or company who owes them money but won’t pay face nearly twice the fees of what they were before last month.

In fact, the cost of seeking compensation of between £3,000 and £5,000 in the small claims court increased from £120 to £205 on April 22nd.

Although the cost to make a claim of between £5,000 and £10,000 has also risen, from £245 to £445, consumer-help websites have been accused of not updating their information.

Pointing out that such sites have been slow to reflect the fee changes, consumer rights campaigner Helen Dewdney warned people to check the official website for accurate costs.

While some groups welcome no charges for claims of less than £1,000, Dewdney believes the almost doubling in fees for cases over this threshold “will put people off going to court.”

The Ministry of Justice has said the new tariff covers the higher cost of running the small claims court, which is meant to be a cost-efficient way to settle disputes as a lawyer is not needed.


May 15, 2014
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