On 22 April 2014, Civil and Family Court fees increased significantly. For possession claims, it has increased from £175 to £280 for claims sent to the court to issue. For Possession Claims Online (PCOL) the rate has dramatically increased from £100 to £250. Prior to these rises, there was a moderate monetary incentive to issue claims online as you would save £75, but that incentive has now largely disappeared. The main benefit of issuing online is that you receive your hearing date straight away.
The down side of issuing possession claims online are the onerous requirements of the Practice Direction at CPR 55 PD6.3A, B & C, which can be found here : http://www.justice. gov.uk/ courts/ procedure-rules/civil /rules/ part55/ pd_part55b
Complying with the practice direction means that the online process is in fact considerably more time consuming than issuing in the conventional manner. When the papers are sent to court the only equivalent requirement in proving the arrears is to bring an up to date rent statement to the court hearing. In our experience, many District Judges will not in practice strictly apply the practice direction requirements, but not all. We have reports of some cases being adjourned because of a failure to strictly comply with PD6.3.
Possession warrant fees have remained the same at £110. All non-money claims are now £280, and this includes injunctions. General applications on notice are now £155, up from £80, with a modest increase to £50 for without notice or consent applications.
Form EX50 which details all fees can be found here:
http://hmctsformfinder. justice.gov.uk/ courtfinder/ forms/ ex050-eng.pdf