If you cannot pay the court filing fee, you will not be able to file your petition until you get an order from a judge waiving the fees. A judge can order that you do not have to pay filing fees if you cannot afford to pay them and if your case has some chance of winning. To ask for this order, you will need to prepare three things:
- A requisition which requests that the court waives the fees.
- A draft of a court order granting the fee waiver. This is the document the judge or master will sign if they decide to waive your fees. You should prepare a draft order with a blank space where the judge or master can write in their name.
- An affidavit that provides evidence setting out why you cannot afford the fees.
You should bring both an original and a photocopy of each of these documents when you go to the courthouse.
Your affidavit must show why you are not able to pay the filing fees. You need to set out your financial situation in detail, including information about your income and expenses, along with information about what you own that has value and any debts or other money you owe. If you are on income assistance or disability assistance, you will need to attach proof of this.
You must also show that your case has some chance of winning. You will need to attach a draft copy of your petition to the affidavit so the court can see what the case is about.
In some places, it can take several days or even weeks to get a decision about your fee waiver. For this reason, it is very important not to wait until right before your deadline to apply for judicial review.
This is a blank requisition for fee waiver that you can download and fill in: Blank Requisition for Fee Waiver
This is an example requisition for fee waiver that you can use as a guide: Example Requisition for Fee Waiver
This is a blank affidavit for fee waiver that you can download and fill in: Blank Affidavit for Fee Waiver
This is an example affidavit for fee waiver that you can use as a guide: Example Affidavit for Fee Waiver
The next page will tell how to speak to a judge about waiving the fees.