On 1 July 2015, NFL posted about the Senate voting on 25 June 2015 to disallow the proposed amendments to the Family Law Regulations which would have increased fees payable to the courts in family law matters significantly. See this post here.
Unfortunately, despite the Senate voting against the proposal, on Monday 13 July 2015, new fees in family law matters were introduced. The fee increases include:
- An increase in the full divorce fee in the Federal Circuit Court of Australia from $845 to $1,200 ($355 increase) and the full divorce fee in the Family Court of Australia from $1,195 to $1,200 ($5 increase);
- An increase in the fees for consent orders from $155 to $240 ($85 increase);
- An increase in the fees for issuing subpoenas from $55 to $125 ($70 increase);
- An increase in all other existing family law fee categories (by an average of 11 per cent) except for the reduced divorce fee in the Federal Circuit Court and Family Court; and
- A new fee category for the filing of Amended Applications ($125).
However, there is still some hope that the fee increases will not be long lasting, as Labor has brought legal proceedings against Attorney-General George Brandis. Labor has called the increase “an insult to justice” and has indicated that they will ask the Federal Court to declare that the regulation has no effect.