Kenya: Judiciary Staff Ignoring Notice Cutting Case Filing Fees - Lawyers

Lawyers have accused Judiciary staff of failing to comply with a notice that took effect on July 1 adjusting court filing fees.

In a letter to Chief Justice Martha Koome, they said the Judiciary ICT department had not adjusted electronic systems to reflect the changes.

Through the Law Society of Kenya's (LSK) branch chairpersons caucus, lawyers said court users were being charged using the repealed schedule.

"Our inquiries indicate that the ICT department has not adjusted on the system to reflect the changes made by your ladyship. This continues to be a bar to access justice which is a key pillar of your administration," says the letter from caucus chairperson Mathew Nyabena.

Mr Nyabena also said court users expect excess court fees already paid to be refunded.

"One also expects staff under you to expeditiously implement your notices. We urge you to look at the matter and ensure that the issue is resolved urgently so that Kenyans are not charged illegal court fees by judicial staff."

Mr Nyabena, LSK Mombasa branch chairman, said that under the new court filing fees schedule, a claim of Sh1,050,000 attracts filing fees of Sh10,000, while Sh70,000 was charged under the old schedule.

The lawyers said Judiciary accountants and ICT staff had disregarded the CJ's notice.

"This coupled with the old one that dealt with the waiver of court fees for commercial cases shows a trend where the Judiciary is not passing this benefit to court users," Mr Nyabena said.

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