Exemptions & Remissions – Questions & Answers
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Eligibility For Fee Exemption
You are eligible for a fee exemption if you receive any of the following means-tested benefits and you have not been awarded damages of more than £16,000, which were disregarded when determining your eligibility for the benefit:
- Income Support
- Income based Job-Seekers Allowance
- State Pension Guarantee Credit
- A combination of Working Tax Credit and either child Tax Credit, Disability Element or Severe Disability Element
- Housing Benefit
- Council Tax Benefit
Eligibility For Remission Of Fees
If you do not qualify for a fee exemption you may be eligible for a fee remission if your gross annual income* is within the bands shown in the table.
|Up to £12,000||No fee to pay|
|£12,001 to £13,500||75% remission –
You need to enclose 25% of fee
|£13,501 to £15,000||50% remission –
You need to enclose 50% of the fee
|£15,001 to £16,500||25% remission –
You need to enclose 75% of the fee
|Over £16,501||You are not entitled to a fee remission|
*Gross annual income is the amount received before you pay tax and national insurance. It may come from:
- Non-means tested benefits
- Pensions and/or
- Interest from capital investments
What if I am not eligible for an exemption or remission but still cannot afford the fee?
It is possible that you may not be eligible for an exemption or remission under the criteria set out, however payment of the fee would nevertheless cause you or your dependants undue hardship. For example, it may be that payment of a fee would make it difficult to meet your normal living expenses such as food costs and bills. Or you may need to make a number of repeat applications relating to a single matter and feel that paying a fee on each occasion would cause hardship.
In such circumstances, you may apply for the fee to be waived by writing a letter explaining our situation and including it with your application to the Court or the OPG. At this stage, you do not need to send your payment.
What If I Cannot Afford To Pay Now But Can Pay Later?
If you are waiting receipt of funds, for example from a damages award, or an inheritance and cannot pay the fee immediately you may be permitted to postpone payment. To do this you should include a letter with your application asking us to postpone collection of the fee and explain the reason for your request.