Research and analysis

Impact assessment opinion: enhanced court fees

Red rated evaluation of Ministry of Justice impact assessment on enhanced court fees

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Detail

Proposal [extracted from impact assessment]

The proposed change is intended to increase the fees charged to some users of the civil and family courts system beyond the level necessary to recover costs. This would produce additional revenue to fund other areas of the civil and family courts system.

Factors contributing to rating of the RPC opinion

The impact assessment lacked clarity. The Ministry of Justice has not explained sufficiently the outcome the proposal is intended to achieve – whether the proposal will result in the court service generating an adequate level of revenue to meet its costs, or whether a surplus will be generated. While the narrative in the impact assessment suggests that the purpose of the proposal is to reduce or even eliminate the burden to the tax payer, the figures set out by the Department suggests a level of revenue that will exceed estimated costs.

This IA received a red rating, meaning ‘not fit for purpose’.