I was due to go to court for an FDA in March but due to corona this was cancelled. A new appointment was set up and then cancelled. We now have a new appointment on in August by phone.
My ex's solicitor has provided an open offer which I will be declining. The solicitor then states in the letter that my ex's solicitors costs from the court date in March onwards will fall to be paid in full by me if I fail to achieve a settlement at the final hearing which is more than what they originally offered.
I have had some legal advise and the indication is that I would be entitled to more than what I am being offered. My ex's solicitor is fully aware of my financial situation so they would be lucky to get £100 out of me let alone £1000's hence why i'm self repping. Is this a usual tactic to push someone into taking an offer? And can they chase me from costs?
The courts can award costs orders against you if you reject a reasonable Open Offer. Any cost award is quite rare, full awards even more so, and the basic principles of needs and ability to pay still apply.
Assumedly you are rejecting the offer on good advice that it is not a fair offer, if so you should not be worried about a potential cost award.
If you are having an FDA rather than going straight to and FDR that suggests there are issues that need sorting e.g. do you agree on the value of assets (such as the house), or you are unsatisfied each other have made a full and frank disclosure? These would be another good reason to reject an Open Offer at this early stage.
In summary, I don't think they are chasing you for fees. It's more likely they are using them as a threat to pressure you in to accepting their offer.