Family Law

We are experienced in both recovering and opposing legal costs in a broad range of family law matters, including divorce, matrimonial finance and cross border children cases.

Legal costs in family law proceedings will generally include Court fees, the costs of obtaining legal advice, the costs involved in gathering legal evidence and the costs of attending Court hearings.


The general rule in England and Wales is that costs follow the event, meaning the unsuccessful party is ordered to pay the costs of the successful party. However, this principle does not apply to family law cases.


In most family cases, the parties will generally bear their own costs. However, under Rule 28.1 of the Family Procedure Rules, the Court may at any time make such an order as to costs as it considers just. This is so that people with family law issues are not discouraged from going to court because they may be liable for the other party’s costs.


The Family Courts will make costs orders against a party only in exceptional circumstances. The Court may make an order requiring one party to pay the costs of another party at any stage of the proceedings where it considers it appropriate to do so because of the conduct of a party in relation to the proceedings, whether before or during them.

In deciding what costs order to make having regard to the conduct of a party, the court must have regard to –

  • Any failure by a party to comply with the Family Procedure Rules, any order of the Court or any practice direction which the Court considers relevant;

  • Any open offer to settle made by a party;


  • Whether it was reasonable for a party to raise, pursue or contest a particular allegation or issue;

  • The manner in which a party has pursued or responded to the application or a particular allegation or issue;

  • Any other aspect of a party's conduct in relation to proceedings which the court considers relevant; and

  • The financial effect on the parties of any costs order.

Situations where the conduct of a party to proceedings may lead to an order for costs being enforced include:


  • Where allegations made against a party are unfounded;

  • Failure or refusal to engage in alternative dispute resolution; and


  • Where a party refuses to attend Court hearings or other required appointments related to the proceedings.


The order would usually be made at the final hearing; however, an interim costs order may be made at a hearing at any stage within the proceedings.

We provide a complete range of legal costs services in family law matters, including the preparation of Statements of Costs for hearings and Bills of Costs for detailed assessment.

To discuss how we can assist you with legal costs services in family law matters, contact us using the details below.

Contact us now to discuss your needs and receive a free, no obligation quotation.

Athene Legal

32 Threadneedle Street



0207 459 4843

Services in Family Law

We help to address and resolve multifaceted challenges in relation to all aspects of legal costs, tailoring our strategic approach to address the specific objectives of our clients.

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