Posted in Legal News
As legal experts in London and the south east dealing with many facets of our complex legal system, we at Pindoria Solicitors believe no one should be barred from justice.
Therefore, it is with more than a passing interest that we have noted how the Justice Select Committee has recently condemned big rises in charges for divorce, employment or asylum cases as unjustified.
We agree that big court fees impose an unjustified tax on divorce, whilst denying refugees the opportunity to establish asylum rights and prevent employees with legitimate grievances from obtaining justice – all which come from findings in a report by the committee.
The Justice Select Committee also called for some charges to be rescinded as it dismissed government reasons. Of course, we know that following the difficult years of the credit crunch, the Ministry of Justices finances will be affected just like in all walks of public spending, but access to justice must be paramount for all.
There is a fear within the legal profession that justice is in danger of being restricted to the wealthy andin recent years fees are increasing in order to subsidise the legal system. The main rises have been:
- Employment tribunal fees of up to £1,200 introduced in 2013, have led to a 70% drop in the number of cases being brought.
- Fees for financial claims for sums over £300,000 going up five-fold last year, from £1,920 to £10,000. A plan to double that level to £20,000 has temporarily been shelved.
- The price of a divorce going from £410 to £550 – although the average cost of uncontested proceedings is estimated to be £270.
The MoJ is also considering increases of 600% for asylum and immigration tribunal fees. Applications for decisions on papers will rise from for £80 to £490 and for oral hearings from £140 to £800.
It is somewhat frustrating that these costs, whilst being well documented in the legal world are not getting on the public’s radar until they are affected.
Legal experts in London and elsewhere in the country do a sterling job day in and day out for clients and our profession is very much a vocation.
We at Pindoria Solicitors believe good quality professional legal advice and help for all is what has made this country one of the fairest legal systems in the world.