They do indeed. It’s also very common where if it’s the least bit complicated, they will say it’s a civil dispute.
It is very common unfortunately when the financial wherewithal of when party is far in excess of the financial wherewithal of the other party, that even if the substantial party has a limited chance of success, they will just keep litigating hoping that the other person runs out of money there loses the battle because of the potential financial risk if they do lose.
It’s not for the judge to raise the issue of whether or not you can pay the other side legal fees. It is for the other side. This is never an issue for the defendant has to defend the claim regardless of their financial wherewithal. It’s only an issue for claimants.
If the claimant believes that you would not have the money to pay for the costs of the litigation, they can make an application to court for an “security for costs order” which is an order whereby you have to provide some security in the way of a property or a third party who is willing to guarantee the money and ultimately pay the money into court in respect of your anticipated costs.
If you will of course it would all come back to you and you would get your costs awarded against the other side.
Incidentally, if you do win and you get costs awarded in your favour against the other side, it doesn’t automatically give you the money if they simply don’t pay you. If they don’t pay, you then have to enforce the judgements in the usual way with charging order, third party debt order, bailiffs etc