Publish date

16 April 2024

Family court fee increases in May 2024

Following a government consultation in November 2023, there will be widespread increases to court fees from 1 May 2024. This includes an increase in court fees relating to the resolution of financial arrangements following a divorce as well as child arrangements.

The court system is an essential public service in England and Wales and requires proper resourcing. The Ministry of Justice has said that “Implementing increases to court and tribunal fees is vital to our ongoing work to protect access to the courts for all those who seek justice”.

It is important to remember that family court fees have not been changed since 2021, despite the enormous strain faced due to funding issues. The fee increases which are expected to shortly come into effect are necessary for improving the quality of service offered by the court when considering rising costs of maintaining those services.

How much are family court fees increasing by?

The court fee when applying for a financial settlement (financial remedy order) is currently £275 and will rise to £303. If a financial agreement on divorce is reached by agreement, there is currently a £53 court fee payable to submit a draft consent order to the court for approval, which will increase to £58.

The current fee for applying for a child arrangements order is £232 will also increase to £255.

There will also be increases to other fees relating to matrimonial and civil partnership proceedings, financial proceedings, private law children’s proceedings and adoption proceedings, as well proceedings relating to the enforcement of financial orders.

Whilst it had been anticipated that the fee for applying for a divorce or civil partnership dissolution would also rise, in light of the feedback from the consultation this fee will not be increased at this point in time.

What other costs are there to consider when divorcing?

It is worth remembering that in addition to these court fees, you might incur other expenses such as mediation costs or solicitor’s fees as part of any proceedings relating to divorce, finances or child arrangements for example.

Crucially, for those on a lower income receiving state benefits, the Help With Fees service remains available to help reduce fees partially or completely for those eligible.

With court fees increasing and delays in court proceedings still an area of much concern, over the coming weeks our Family team will be highlighting the other options that are available when it comes to trying to resolve matters following a divorce or separation. Alternatives to court should always be considered, and should you wish to discuss these or any matters relating to divorce, finances or child arrangements, please contact Anna Woodhoo at or any other member of the family team at Thomson Snell & Passmore.

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