The fee for lodging a divorce petition is rising from £410 to £550, as the Ministry of Justice raises its fees to pay for the overall cost of administering justice.
The MoJ anticipates that the increase in a wide range of court fees will bring in an extra £60 million a year. The Government’s intention with the fee increases is to make the court system as self-funding as possible.
The increase, due to be imposed in April 2016, is likely to deter many of those determined to separate. With every divorce petition having to go through court, many people will have received incorrect information as to the charge for lodging the divorce petition. They will not have time to get their petition in before the fee increase takes effect.
Divorce is a necessary part of the legal process to bring a relationship to an end, so separating couples have to pay the divorce petition fee. The actual cost of the administrative process has been shown to be £270, meaning that at the new rates, the MoJ is making a profit.