If the District Judge order is not specific then you have to pay the court fee on the market of property as on the date of filing of the suit. It is the proper procedure. To proceed the litigation you may otherwise interpret and try to pay only 3 percent and if rejected by District Court then went to the High Court. Court are play grounds for litigants.
Mixed reaction from lawyers to amendment to TN Court Fees Act
The Tamil Nadu Court Fees and Suits Valuation (Amendment) Act, 2017, which came into force from March 1, has evoked mixed reaction from lawyers practising in the Madras High Court Bench here.
While some express concern over steep increase in court fees, others say the amendments could pave way for evasion of court fees by simply getting civil suits referred to mediation centres without the intention of settling the dispute.
L. Shaji Chellan of All India Lawyers Union (AILU) says the increase in the quantum of court fees to be paid for various kinds of cases was completely unacceptable since “justice delivery should be considered as a service and not a business.”
He insists that Bar Associations across the State must raise the issue with the authorities concerned and make sure that the litigants do not end up being burdened with heavy costs for approaching courts.
On the other hand, S. Srinivasa Raghavan, former vice-president of Madurai Bench of Madras High Court Bar Association, says the increase in fee for revision petitions, writs, partitions suits and caveats were very reasonable and justified. Implementation of uniform court fee for civil suits across all courts in the State is also a welcome move though increase in the fee for suits relating to immovable properties from 1% to 3% is a matter of concern.
“It is a pretty steep hike for arbitration matters. Same is the case with petitions filed under the Negotiable Instruments Act, but the silver lining in these kind of cases is the cap fixed at ₹10,000,” he says, adding the grey area in the recent amendment is the replacement of Section 69A with a completely new provision which enables refund of court fees even if a case is simply referred for mediation, irrespective of the result of such mediation.
“This would encourage litigants to get the court fee refunded by voluntarily urging the court to refer the matter for mediation.
“Since there is no provision in the Act for collecting court fee once again for the same case, they may not agree for settlement in the mediation and get the case transferred back to the court. This anomaly should be corrected at the earliest,” he points out.
Further referring to Section 7 of the Act which states that court fees should be determined on the basis of the market value of a property as fixed under Section 47A of the Indian Stamp Act, 1899, he says: “This provision may again lead to a lot of litigations on the aspect of determination of market value itself apart from the original list.”