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Courts Act 2003

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

Fees and costs

92Fees

(1)The Lord Chancellor may with the consent of the Treasury by order prescribe fees payable in respect of anything dealt with by—

(a)the Supreme Court,

(b)county courts, and

(c)magistrates' courts.

(2)An order under this section may, in particular, contain provision as to—

(a)scales or rates of fees;

(b)exemptions from or reductions in fees;

(c)remission of fees in whole or in part.

(3)When including any provision in an order under this section, the Lord Chancellor must have regard to the principle that access to the courts must not be denied.

(4)The Lord Chancellor may not under this section prescribe fees which he or another authority has power to prescribe apart from this section.

(5)Before making an order under this section, the Lord Chancellor must consult—

(a)the Lord Chief Justice;

(b)the Master of the Rolls;

(c)the President of the Family Division;

(d)the Vice Chancellor;

(e)the Head of Civil Justice;

(f)the Deputy Head of Civil Justice (if there is one).

(6)Before making an order under this section in relation to civil proceedings, the Lord Chancellor must consult the Civil Justice Council.

(7)The Lord Chancellor must take such steps as are reasonably practicable to bring information about fees to the attention of persons likely to have to pay them.

(8)Fees payable under this section are recoverable summarily as a civil debt.

(9)Subsection (10) applies in relation to an authority which has power to prescribe fees payable in any of the courts referred to in subsection (1).

(10)Nothing in this section prevents the authority from applying to any extent provisions contained in an order made under this section; and an instrument made in exercise of the power is to be read (unless the contrary intention appears) as applying those provisions as amended from time to time.

93Award of costs against third parties

After section 19A of the Prosecution of Offences Act 1985 (c. 23) insert—

19BProvision for award of costs against third parties

(1)The Lord Chancellor may by regulations make provision empowering magistrates' courts, the Crown Court and the Court of Appeal to make a third party costs order if the condition in subsection (3) is satisfied.

(2)A “third party costs order” is an order as to the payment of costs incurred by a party to criminal proceedings by a person who is not a party to those proceedings (“the third party”).

(3)The condition is that—

(a)there has been serious misconduct (whether or not constituting a contempt of court) by the third party, and

(b)the court considers it appropriate, having regard to that misconduct, to make a third party costs order against him.

(4)Regulations made under this section may, in particular—

(a)specify types of misconduct in respect of which a third party costs order may not be made;

(b)allow the making of a third party costs order at any time;

(c)make provision for any other order as to costs which has been made in respect of the proceedings to be varied on, or taken account of in, the making of a third party costs order;

(d)make provision for account to be taken of any third party costs order in the making of any other order as to costs in respect of the proceedings.

(5)Regulations made under this section in relation to magistrates' courts must provide that the third party may appeal to the Crown Court against a third party costs order made by a magistrates' court.

(6)Regulations made under this section in relation to the Crown Court must provide that the third party may appeal to the Court of Appeal against a third party costs order made by the Crown Court.

94Award of costs in appeals under Proceeds of Crime Act 2002

(1)Amend the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (c. 29) as follows.

(2)In section 89 (procedure on appeal to the Court of Appeal), after subsection (3) insert—

(4)Subject to any rules made under section 91, the costs of and incidental to all proceedings on an appeal to the criminal division of the Court of Appeal under—

(a)section 43(1) or (2) (appeals against orders made in restraint proceedings), or

(b)section 65 (appeals against, or relating to, the making of receivership orders),

are in the discretion of the court.

(5)Such rules may in particular make provision for regulating matters relating to the costs of those proceedings, including prescribing scales of costs to be paid to legal or other representatives.

(6)The court shall have full power to determine by whom and to what extent the costs are to be paid.

(7)In any proceedings mentioned in subsection (4), the court may—

(a)disallow, or

(b)(as the case may be) order the legal or other representative concerned to meet,

the whole of any wasted costs or such part of them as may be determined in accordance with rules under section 91.

(8)In subsection (7) “wasted costs” means any costs incurred by a party—

(a)as a result of any improper, unreasonable or negligent act or omission on the part of any legal or other representative or any employee of such a representative, or

(b)which, in the light of any such act or omission occurring after they were incurred, the court considers it is unreasonable to expect that party to pay.

(9)“Legal or other representative”, in relation to a party to proceedings means any person exercising a right of audience or right to conduct litigation on his behalf.

(3)Subsection (2) applies in relation to proceedings on appeals in respect of offences committed or alleged to have been committed on or after 24th March 2003.

(4)In section 91 (Crown Court Rules) after “Crown Court Rules” insert “or (as the case may be) Criminal Appeal Rules”.

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