If you’re about to go through the process of getting a divorce from your spouse, you might be worried about the costs you’ll face. To help you prepare for this legal separation, here’s a brief guide to the divorce fees you can expect to pay.
When you get a divorce or dissolve a civil partnership, you or your ex-partner will be expected to pay court fees. This is a requirement in order to register your application, and you must pay it regardless of whether you intend to deal with your divorce yourself or enlist the help of a family law solicitor.
In England and Wales, the fee for divorce (or dissolution if you’re separating from your civil partner) is currently £550.
If you decide to file for judicial separation instead of getting a full divorce (perhaps for religious reasons), you’ll need to pay court fees of £365.
You may have other court fees to pay in relation to your divorce too. For example, if you wish to apply for a consent order (which is a legal document that can be used to make financial agreements you’ve reached with your ex-partner legally binding), you’ll need to pay £50.
If you want to apply for a financial order (which asks the courts to determine how your finances should be divided), you’ll have to pay £255.
There are a number of ways to pay these court fees. For example, you can transfer the money by phone with a credit or debit card. To do this, simply include a letter with your divorce petition to request a call to make the payment. Remember to include your phone number in this letter so that the divorce centre is able to contact you.
You can also pay by sending a cheque through the post. Make the cheque out to ‘HM Courts and Tribunals Service’ and include in it your divorce petition.
Most people are expected to cover these fees themselves. However, you may be eligible for financial help if you’re on certain benefits or if you’ve an income and savings below a particular level. If you’re not sure if you may be able to qualify for assistance, you can contact your local Citizens Advice Bureaux for information and guidance.
Alternatively you may be entitled to fee remission in respect of the court fees. Details can be found within court guidance form EX160A – How to apply for help with fees, which is available on-line or from your local court.
As well as paying a court fee for divorce, you may have legal and professional fees to cover. If you want expert help to guide you through a divorce or the dissolution of a civil partnership, you should factor this into your expenses.
If you’re the respondent you may be asked to contribute towards the petitioner’s legal costs. At Slater and Gordon Lawyers we can advise you as to the right approach.
The fees charged by solicitors vary, and you often have a choice of paying by the hour or going for a fixed fee divorce service. At Slater and Gordon Lawyers, we offer flexible pricing options, including fixed fee costs.
The benefits of a fixed fee divorce
Going through a divorce can be a very difficult and emotional time, and not knowing how much you’ll need to pay in legal fees can bring further uncertainty and stress. This is why fixed fee divorce services are a popular option. These settlement structures mean you pay an agreed sum for receiving legal support throughout the process.
At Slater and Gordon, we provide a guaranteed quote and won’t change this once it has been agreed. This quote will be tailored to your needs and we’ll ensure that we provide you with the most cost-effective solution for your individual circumstances.
Being able to budget accurately for specialist legal services can remove some of the anxiety from the divorce process and give you added peace of mind.
Generally speaking, the more straightforward your divorce is, the less you’ll have to pay in legal fees. So, if you’re keen to keep your spending to a minimum, it’s useful if you and your ex-partner can agree on as much as possible. For example, if you’ve an uncontested divorce (meaning you’ve reached agreement over the fact you’re getting divorced and the grounds on which you’re divorcing), you should find the process to be considerably quicker and cheaper than if your divorce is contested.
If you can’t reach common ground on these points, or if you’re having disagreements over other issues, such as the division of property and money, consider using mediation before arguing your case in court. Mediation can save you time, money and stress.
We’ve the largest team of family law solicitors in England and Wales and are perfectly placed to help you through your divorce. Our experts will be there for you each step of the way, explaining your options and guiding you through the legal terms you’ll come across during the process. Our solicitors offer a highly professional and sensitive service, and will work with you to ensure your divorce is achieved as efficiently as possible.
We pride ourselves on offering a divorce service that’s both compassionate and cost-effective. For more information about our services and the divorce fees you can expect to pay, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us on freephone 0808 175 8000, or you can complete our online contact form and we’ll call you.