The Ministry of Justice has opened applications for court fee refunds for certain fees paid between 22 April 2014 and 31 March 2018.
Following a review in 2018, which concluded that some fees been over-charged or mis-charged, the scheme has been launched in conjunction with Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service.
Amongst the 19 fees which have been identified as having been wrongly charged, these include insolvency proceedings where applications were made within those proceedings and fees were paid either for with or without notice applications, or for applications by consent.
Issue fees which have been discovered to have been over-charged include the issue fee for applications to restore companies to the register (under s1029 of the Companies Act 2006).
The opening of the scheme fulfils a commitment made on 4 July 2018 by the Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Justice. Within that statement, the Government committed to refunding over-paid issue fees for Stage 3 low-value personal injury claims. Full details of how to re-claim the over-paid amount of those issue fees has still not been forthcoming from the Ministry of Justice, and this type of fee does not appear to be recoverable within the current iteration of the refund scheme.
Those who received a full fee remission are not eligible for a refund, having not paid out any fees in the first place. Any person who received a partial remission will be eligible for a refund only of the amount which they in fact paid during the relevant period.
Interest will be applied on successful refund applications at a flat rate of 0.5%.
The Ministry of Justice endeavours to process all applications within 20 working days or receipt. The Ministry has stated that it will continue to annually review the level at which fees are set, to minimise the risk of any mis-charging or over-charging recurring in the future.
Applications are open via an application form which can be returned either by post or email; proof of identity, address and the right to apply are required. There is no closing date for the scheme as of yet.