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COSTS - Divorce/Ancillary Relief

  • howier
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31 Oct 07 #5576 by howier
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:SAnyone up on present staus re costs of divorce and AR, I know law changed and couples now responsible for thier own costs but I do not know when this change became effective so wonder if I might get stung - ex2b applied for divorce in 2003 but did not apply for AR until 2006, we due to go to FH early next year and ex2b has had solicitor and barrister, me self repping:silly:

  • Sera
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31 Oct 07 #5596 by Sera
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I think the present situation is that each party pay their own costs. If you continue to self-rep, that should remain quite low.

Sols usually charge £150-£200 per hour. Once they have your stats, they say you need a senior sol at £200+ vat etc. Which is why I'm self repping.

There are the usual costs for divorce, can't remember. That's for the legal bits.

Two parties going to court, both legally represented could be £50-£70k No bull!

Your sol cannot represent you in Court, you'll need a Barrister. That's where it all clocks up! A local sol can give you a ball-park figure for the legal paperwork.

  • JLGsDad
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31 Oct 07 #5611 by JLGsDad
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There's a thread headed "Calderbank" I think, from which comes

"I think the magic date was 6th April 2006.

If your ancillary relief proceedings commenced after that date then the new cost rules apply (i.e. open offer letters and a presumption that each side covers their own costs as long as everyone is playing fair) "

Try a search on "Calderbank".

Hope this helps.

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01 Nov 07 #5622 by lync
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Hi I have just received my sol fees,and I was pleasantly surprised they were £5,500 this had been ongoing for 18 months lots of letters and a few court appearances. That was also me raising a Force A Sale action. That was Scottish law don't know if it works the same else where. Both of us could have saved alot of unnecessary costs if we could have talked things through. My personal feelings are that once sol get a hold they make things more difficult and advise everything to go through them that's there way of raising there fee. At the end of the day they are the only winners. I think it's the best money I have ever spent.

I admire all you out there for self rep, I wish I had had the guts to do it.

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01 Nov 07 #5626 by sexysadie
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If it's the best money you've ever spent then the solicitors are not the only winners. You paid them to do their job and they have done it.

Sadie

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01 Nov 07 #5696 by howier
Reply from howier
Found the answer:
OPEN OFFERS: THE NEW COSTS RULES
A PRACTICAL GUIDE
The changes
• The 3rd of April 2006 saw the Family Proceedings (Amendment Rules) 2006 (2006 No 352) introduced.
Summary of the new Rules
• The new starting point is:
‘The general rule in ancillary relief proceedings is that the court will not make an order requiring one party to pay the costs of another party; but…’ (r 2.71 (4) (b))
• Costs are now part and parcel of the substantive application and treated as a liability that a party has like any other legitimate debt such as a loan. Costs are not a separate issue to be determined at the end of the judgment. The court has to take into account the costs of the parties when considering the most appropriate order for ancillary relief. Costs should not be determined after judgment.
• Calderbank letters have been abolished. The only offers that are admissible are open offers. Strict without prejudice letters can still be written but they cannot be referred to except at an FDR.
• The general rule is that the court will not make an order requiring one party to pay the costs of another party. This applies to interlocutory hearings as well as the final hearing.
• Notwithstanding the general rule, the court may make an order for costs because of the litigation conduct of a party in relation to the proceedings (whether before or during them).
What should the court consider before making an order for costs?
• In considering what order, if any, to make for costs the court has a (non-exhaustive) checklist of matters to consider:
1) Failure by a party to comply with the FPR, any Court order and any relevant PD, e.g. Where form E has not been filed by the time of the First Appointment in breach of FPR, r. 2.61B;
2
2) Any open offer to settle made by a party, e.g. Where a respondent has made a generous offer at a stage where the applicant has sufficient disclosure to evaluate that offer which is declined without adequate explanation, the court may consider the sanction of casts against the applicant;
3) Whether it is reasonable to raise, pursue or contest a particular allegation or issue;
4) The manner in which a party had pursued or responded to the application or a particular allegation or issue;
5) Any other aspect of conduct in relation to the proceedings which the court considers relevant (catch all provision);
6) The financial effects on the parties of any costs order.

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