D.C. residents who are thinking of getting married or divorced had better make up their minds quickly. Superior Court fees will go up April 1.

Today's 50-cent marriage license will cost $12 after April 1. Breaking up will be even harder to do, financially. The now-modest cost of $5 for a filing fee will soar to $45..

"The fees have not been touched in 10 years," Chief Judge H. Carl Moultrie I explained in an interview. He said that the court must fall in line with increasing costs, and noted that the fee increases are expected to generate nearly $2 million in additional revenues. Court-generated revenues, Moultrie said, go into the city treasury.

Moultrie said that even with the increases, fees in the D.C. court will be comparable to and, in most cases, less than those in other jurisdictions.

The fee for filing civil suits here will increase from $20 to $45, but Maryland courts charge $60 and Virginia courts, $46, according to statistics compiled by the court.

Moultrie said he believed the increased fees would have no effect on the number of suits filed in Superior Court, even when such fees as those for suits in landlord-tenant matters are increased from $20 to $75.

It still costs only $3 to get a marriage license in Maryland, according to a Prince George's County Circuit Court official. But there is a possibility that that fee may go up soon, he noted. The clerk's office there now assesses a $60 filing fee for divorce.

Virginia courts charge $10 for a marriage license and $32 to file for divorce.