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How much does it cost?

Costs will typically include such items as:

  • the court fee,
  • lawyers' fees,
  • costs of service of the initiating document on the defendant,
  • court reporters' fees, and
  • fees or expenses for witnesses or experts.

Court fee

The NCC charges an upfront flat fee depending on where the action is initiated. The rates for 2024 are:
NCC District Court€ 18,287 per party
Court in Summary Proceedings

9,143 per party

NCC Court of Appeal

€ 24,382 per party

Court in Summary Proceedings (on appeal)€ 12,191 per party

These fees are not related to what the case is about or how much money is claimed.
Special rules apply where more than one party is represented by the same lawyer and submits the same arguments.
The court fee must be paid within four weeks in accordance with the statutory time limit. Where a party fails to comply, the court will, having heard the respective party’s view, impose a sanction, such as dismissal of the case.

Lawyers’ fees

The unsuccessful party will bear the costs of the proceedings (both its own and the successful party’s). The parties may make agreements they consider appropriate in respect of these costs. Where no agreement is made, the court will, as a rule, apply the rates to assess lawyers' fees ranging from € 1,000 to € 12,000 for each act of process. See Annex III to the NCC Rules.

Absent special arrangements, it is noteworthy that as a practical matter, in complex litigation, each party may typically have to bear most of its own costs regardless of the outcome, given the modest amounts stated in these rates.

Other costs

Throughout the proceedings, other costs generally are borne by the party incurring them. For example, a witness’s expenses are reimbursed by the party producing the witness. A court reporter’s fees are paid directly to the court reporter by the party or parties instructing the court reporter. The court will fix an amount that must be deposited in advance to cover an expert's fees and expenses and the court will order one or more parties to pay the deposit.

In the final judgment, the court will rule on which party will bear the above fees and expenses.