Legal Articles and Guides
Has your property transfer gone wrong or is it about to go wrong? Deeds office delays? Bad advice from your attorney? Need proper advice from a Conveyancer? Ask a qualified Lawyer to help solve your legal dilemmas today.
The Ingonyama Trust Board (ITB), which may be forced to pay back millions it has allegedly unlawfully collected in rent for nearly a decade from people living on land it controls on behalf of Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini, needs more time to respond to a legal challenge.
A legal battle for ownership of rights to land leased to a major petrol station has ended up in the Constitutional Court. A Cape Times report notes Shell SA had in 1991 built a petrol station in Nelspruit (now Mbombela) in Mpumalanga, on land it leased from HL Hall & Sons and – according to court papers – Hall had undertaken that if ever it wished to sell the land it would first offer it to Shell.
A humble tin shack in the shadow of a luxury new golf estate in the Eastern Cape will have to be demolished after a court ruled in December that the family must vacate the land. A Times Select report says the ruling leaves the Mnyaka family in Chintsa West, outside East London, until the end of February to not only break down the shack they have called home for decades, but also to exhume the remains of eight relatives buried there.
Nearly 130 residents of Winnie Mandela informal settlement in Tembisa have taken the Ekurhuleni municipality and the Gauteng Human Settlements Department to court in a bid to hold them in contempt of the High Court order for the building of their homes.
The last thing you want in any property transfer is any more delay and cost than is already built into the process. Unhappily, that is exactly what is in store if the property’s original title deed is for any reason not to hand. Whether it has been lost or destroyed, you will need your conveyancer to apply for replacement with a certified copy from the Deeds Office.
KZN South Coast police units – including SAPS Search and Rescue, the Tactical Response and Training Unit, as well as its Vehicle Identification and Safeguarding Unit – have a temporary reprieve from being evicted from their premises. This came after their eviction, to be carried out by the sheriff, was halted on Monday because of an urgent application filed by the police.
Only one official of the Department of Rural Development & Land Affairs has been prosecuted for wide-scale corruption and fraud found by the Special Investigating Unit, according to Rapport. As reported previously, the SIU found thousands of beneficiaries of the state’s subsidy programme to buy land were either dead, have never set foot on a farm and are either family or friends of government officials.
The Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) is seeking an urgent meeting with Breede Valley municipality and the judiciary in the wake of farm workers’ evictions in the area, notes a Weeklend Argus report. Western Cape SAHRC Commissioner Chris Nissen said the meeting with the Magistrates’ Commission was intended to bring the plight of farm workers to its attention.
The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) has recommended 42 people, including government officials, be prosecuted for fraud and corruption in the land reform programme. In what is described as corruption ‘on an enormous scale’ it was found state functionaries handed out farms and millions in grants to beneficiaries who did not qualify.
By retreating into ‘a narrow and questionable technical laager’, the SCA has failed South Africans at a time when the foundational principles of our democracy, the rule of law, transparency and good governance are being tested. It did so when adjudicating a legal challenge to vindicate constitutional rights, and its judgment presented ‘a legal setback for ratepayers concerned about malfeasance by city officials’.
Tenants have emerged victorious in two recent cases before the Rental Tribunal which found that landlords' right to favourable returns on their investments was outweighed by the rights of their tenants to affordable housing. GroundUp reports on two Western Cape tenants who faced eviction by the same landlord.
A recent Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) judgment of Milnerton Estates Limited v Commissioner for the South African Revenue Service (1159/2017)  ZASCA 155 has confirmed that when a property developer enters into an agreement with a buyer to transfer the property, even if the developer only actually gets paid in a subsequent tax year, the income is deemed to have accrued to the developer at that date.
The case of Walker and Another v Cilantro Residential Estate Homeowners Association (A3067/16)  ZAGPJHC 299 is yet another warning from our courts to take seriously the building deadlines commonly imposed on buyers of plots in residential estates. Failure to comply with them could expose you to heavy fines, recurring penalties and even the risk of losing your plot altogether.
The Land Claims court has rejected an ‘obviously false’ claim over large parts of KZN, which was pursued by the Land Claims Commission for 20 years, Netwerk24 reports. Judge Eberhard Bertelsmann made damning findings about the conduct of the government and the Qwabe-Waterfall community that claimed vast areas of land belonging to Tongaat Hulett and 26 other owners.
The ANC in the Western Cape has asked Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane to investigate the alleged racial incident at Cape Town’s Clifton Fourth beach in December. A furore erupted over Christmas after it emerged beachgoers were instructed to leave the beach. Beachgoers, including ANC provincial secretary Faiz Jacobs and his family, were instructed to leave the beach after members of a private security company, PPA, allegedly imposed an 8pm curfew, according to a report in The Citizen.