Disclaimer notices

Disclaimer notices offer protection for owners and employees concerning shopping centres, stadiums, parking lots and other public areas. For these notices to be effective, certain requirements have to be adhered to. False reliance on these disclaimers can be a very expensive mistake. Find out whether your disclaimer notice will be sufficient to protect you and your employees.

Disclaimer notices are commonly seen in shopping centres, stadiums, parking lots and other public areas. These notices are generally aimed at protecting the owner or employees with regards to the area in question, by exempting him/her from legal liability when a member of public using the area suffers damage.

It is well established that disclaimer notices are enforceable when properly implemented. This is clear from the extract below:

Durban’s Water Wonderland (Pty) Ltd v Botha and Another (1999) 1 All SA 411 (A) at 115:

“If the language of a disclaimer or exemption clause is such that it exempts the proferens from liability in express and unambiguous terms effect must be given to that meaning. If there is ambiguity, the language must be construed against the proferens. (See Government of the Republic of South Africa v Fibre Spinners & Weavers (Pty) Ltd 1978 (2) SA 794 (A) at 804 C.)”

According to prevailing case law, when considering whether a disclaimer notice is effective, two factors have to be considered:

Firstly, from the Durban Water Wonderland case, it is evident that for the disclaimer’s content to be effective, the wording thereof must not be ambiguous. It is therefore required that the disclaimer must indicate in express terms what the person relying on the disclaimer is exempted from when someone reads the disclaimer. However, any alternative meaning of the disclaimer notice cannot be too widely interpreted. It is simply required that the meaning of the disclaimer is clear to anyone reading it. This test is implemented so that a vague statement cannot be regarded as sufficient to bind someone according to the legal principle of so called “quasi-mutual assent”, which is the underlying basis binding a person that reads a disclaimer notice.

Consider the following examples: “the owner of the property is hereby exempted” and “the owner, managing agent and any other employee is hereby exempted”. In the first example only the owner of the property is exempted from liability, while in the second example, employees of the owner and the managing agent of the property are included under the exemption clause. The first example would not have been sufficient if damage was caused to a person by the negligence of an employee, as employees were clearly not within the ambit of the notice. It is therefore important to ensure that the wording of a disclaimer is clear, unambiguous and is sufficient to protect all parties that need protection.

A further issue to take into account when the effectiveness of a disclaimer notice is considered is the question whether such disclaimer has been properly displayed. A disclaimer can only be effective when it is found that the disclaimer was displayed in an appropriate position, which would allow the reasonable person to have seen the disclaimer, or to ought to have seen the disclaimer. Practical issues, such as the size of the disclaimer, the distance from the viewer, the visibility, font and positioning of the disclaimer should be taken into account. This test is implemented as the content of the disclaimer can only fall within the knowledge of a person, when the notice is of such a nature that it is easily spotted by someone. When a disclaimer is affixed to a premise, it is therefore important that the above factors be taken into account.

It is clear that a disclaimer is an effective method of protection, especially when used in areas where large amounts of people visit frequently. However, the use of a disclaimer notice is a potentially risky practise, as it must be ensured that the wording and placement thereof is sufficient for the reliance thereon. It is recommended that an attorney be consulted before putting up such a notice.

Bibliography
Cases
Durban’s Water Wonderland (Pty) Ltd v Botha and Another (1999) 1 All SA 411 (A)
Government of the Republic of South Africa v Fibre Spinners & Weavers (Pty) Ltd 1978 (2) SA 794 (A)

This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied on as legal or other professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your legal adviser for specific and detailed advice.

Vrywaringskennisgewings

Vrywaringskennisgewings bied beskerming aan eienaars en werknemers van winkelsentrums, stadions, parkeerareas en ander publieke areas. Alvorens hierdie  vrywaringskennisgewings effektief is, moet die kennisgewings aan bepaalde vereistes voldoen. Om verkeerdelik op hierdie vrywaringskennisgewings te steun, kan ʼn baie duur fout wees. Bepaal of die betrokke vrywaringskennisgewing voldoende is om jou en jou werknemers te beskerm.

Vrywaringskennisgewings word dikwels in winkelsentrums, stadions, parkeerareas en ander publieke areas gesien. Hierdie vrywaringskennisgewings word gebruik om die eienaar of werknemers van die tersaaklike area te beskerm, deur hom/haar vry te spreek van aanspreeklikheid, indien ʼn lid van die publiek van hierdie bepaalde area gebruik maak.

Vanuit regspraak blyk dit duidelik dat vrywaringskennisgewings wel afdwingbaar is, indien die kennisgewing op die korrekte wyse toegepas word. Die afdwingbaarheid van die vrywaringskennisgewings blyk duidelik vanuit die onderstaande uittreksel:

Durban’s Water Wonderland (Pty) Ltd v Botha and Another (168/97) [1998] ZASCA 115; [1999] 1 All SA 411 (A)

“If the language of a disclaimer or exemption clause is such that it exempts the proferens from liability in express and unambiguous terms effect must be given to that meaning. If there is ambiguity, the language must be construed against the proferens. (See Government of the Republic of South Africa v Fibre Spinners & Weavers (Pty) Ltd 1978 (2) SA 794 (A) at 804 C.)”

Volgens regspraak, moet twee belangrike faktore oorweeg word om te bepaal of ʼn vrywaringskennisgewing wel afdwingbaar is.

Eerstens, uit die Durban’s Water Wonderland-saak, is dit duidelik dat die betrokke  kennisgewing slegs effektief is, indien die bewoording van die kennisgewing nie dubbelsinnig is nie. ʼn Definitiewe vereiste is dus dat die kennisgewing duidelik en sonder enige dubbelsinnige bewoording uiteen gesit moet word. Die bewoording moet van so ’n aard wees dat die Verweerder gevrywaar word wanneer die publiek die kennisgewing lees. Dit moet egter bygevoeg word dat enige alternatiewe betekenis aan die kennisgewing nie te wyd geïnterpreteer moet word nie. Daar word dus bloot verreis dat die inhoud en betekenis van die kennisgewing duidelik is aan enigiemand wat dit lees. Hierdie toets word geïmplementeer sodat ʼn vae en dubbelsinnige stelling nie as voldoende beskou word om die publiek te bind volgens die sogenaamde “quasi mutual assent”-leerstuk nie. Hierdie leerstuk is die onderliggende regsbasis wat ʼn persoon bind aan die inhoud van ʼn vrywaringskennisgewing.

Die volgende voorbeelde van bewoording kan oorweeg word: “Die eienaar van die eiendom word hiermee gevrywaar” of “die eienaar, besturende agent en enige ander werknemer word hiermee gevrywaar” In die eerste voorbeeld word slegs die eienaar van die eiendom gevrywaar terwyl die tweede voorbeeld ook die besturende agent van ʼn eiendom asook enige werknemer vrywaar. Die eerste voorbeeld sou nie voldoende gewees het indien die skade aan ʼn lid van die publiek veroorsaak was deur die nalatigheid van ʼn werknemer nie, aangesien werknemers duidelik nie binne die bestek van die kennisgewing geval het nie. Dit is dus belangrik om te verseker dat die inhoud van ʼn vrywaringskennisgewing duidelik, verstaanbaar en voldoende is om alle partye te beskerm wat beskerming nodig het.

ʼn Verder kwessie wat ingedagte geneem moet word, wanneer die afdwingbaarheid van ʼn vrywaringskennisgewing oorweeg word, is die vraag of die kennisgewing duidelik sigbaar is. Die kennisgewing kan slegs afdwingbaar wees indien dit behoorlik vertoon is, sodat lede van die publiek dit gesien het of dit behoort te gesien het. Praktiese kwessies, soos die grootte van die kennisgewing, die afstand tot by die kennisgewing, die sigbaarheid daarvan, die lettergrootte en – tipe en die posisionering van die kennisgewing moet ook in ag geneem word. Hierdie toets word geïmplementeer aangesien die inhoud daarvan slegs binne die kennis van die lid van die publiek beskou kan word, indien die kennisgewing van so aard was dat die publiek dit maklik kon raaksien. Wanneer ʼn vrywaringskennisgewing dus gebruik word, moet die bogenoemde faktore in gedagte gehou word.

Dit is duidelik dat ʼn vrywaringskennisgewing ʼn effektiewe metode van beskerming kan wees, veral wanneer dit gebruik word in areas wat lede van die publiek dikwels besoek. Die gebruik van ʼn vrywaringskennisgewing is egter ʼn potensiële problematiese praktyk, aangesien daar verseker moet word dat die bewoording en plasing van die kennisgewing voldoende is om daarop te steun. Daar word aanbeveel dat ʼn prokureur die bewoording van die kennisgewing moet nagaan, voordat dit in gebruik geneem word.

Verwysingslys
Sake
Durban’s Water Wonderland (Pty) Ltd v Botha and Another (1999) 1 All SA 411 (A)
Government of the Republic of South Africa v Fibre Spinners & Weavers (Pty) Ltd 1978 (2) SA 794 (A)

Hierdie artikel is ‘n algemene inligtingstuk en moet nie gebruik of staatgemaak word op as professionele advies nie. Geen aanspreeklikheid kan aanvaar word vir enige foute of weglatings of vir enige verlies of skade wat voortspruit uit vertroue op enige inligting hierin nie. Kontak atyd jou finansiële adviseur vir spesifieke en gedetailleerde advies.

Are there limitations on ownership rights?

It is a recognised principle of property law that ownership does not confer absolute and unlimited entitlement on the owner, but that various limitations exist in the interest of the community and for the benefit of other people.

The most important limitation on the owner in the interest of the community as a whole is the payment of taxes to the state in respect of certain movable and immovable property. In the case of immovable property several measures make land available to a larger section of the community, which implies that the restitution of land rights and the provision of land will require measures for expropriation. Furthermore, a number of provisions deal with environmental conservation and physical planning which limit the owner’s entitlement in the interest of the community. Limiting measures in the case of moveable property prohibit the use of such property to the detriment of the community, for instance motor vehicles, fire-arms and dependence-producing substances.

There are also measures which limit the owner’s entitlement, not in the interest of the community, but in the interest of other individuals. The best known example in this case is neighbour law, which implies that the owner may not use his land in such a way that it constitutes an unreasonable burden on his neighbours. The criterion of reasonableness determines that, in these circumstances, the owner of immovable property may exercise his entitlements within reasonable bounds, and that the neighbouring owner or occupier must tolerate the owner’s exercise of his entitlements within reasonable bounds.

Other examples of the application of the criterion of reasonableness in the case of neighbour law are the obligation to lateral and surface support, measures dealing with encroachments, the mutual obligation regarding the natural flow of water and the elimination of danger.

Other people besides the owner may acquire entitlements (for instance use rights) in respect of the moveable or immovable property of the owner. Holders of limited real rights acquire entitlements in respect of the asset, which limits the owner’s ownership (dominium) as they burden the property. It is therefore enforceable against the owner and his successors in title. Certain creditors’ rights may also result in people acquiring entitlements in respect of the owner’s property. These rights are, however, only enforceable against the owner personally and do not burden the property as such, therefore it is not enforceable against successors in title.

This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied on as legal or other professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your legal adviser for specific and detailed advice.

Is daar beperkings op eiendomsreg?

Dit is ‘n algemene beginsel in die sakereg dat eiendomsreg nie absolute en onbeperkte inhoudsbevoegdhede aan ‘n eienaar verleen nie, maar dat daar verskeie beperkings daarop bestaan in belang van die gemeenskap en ten gunste van ander persone.

Die belangrikste beperking op die eienaar in belang van die gemeenskap in die algemeen is geleë in die betaling van belasting aan die staat ten opsigte van sekere roerende en onroerende bates. In die geval van onroerende bates bestaan daar verskeie maatreëls om grond tot die beskikking van ‘n groter deel van die gemeenskap te stel, wat impliseer dat herstel van grondregte en grondverskaffing verskeie onteieningsmaatreëls noodsaak. Voorts bestaan daar verskeie maatreëls met betrekking tot omgewingsbewaring en fisiese beplanning wat in die belang van die gemeenskap beperkings op ‘n eienaar se inhoudsbevoegdhede tot gevolg het. Beperkende maatreëls met betrekking tot onroerende bates is hoofsaaklik gebaseer op die verbod op die gebruik van sodanige goedere tot nadeel van die gemeenskap, soos byvoorbeeld in die geval van motorvoertuie, vuurwapens en afhanklikheidsvormende stowwe.

Daar bestaan ook beperkings wat nie primêr op die belange van die gemeenskap gerig is nie, maar wat die uitoefening van ‘n eienaar se inhoudsbevoegdhede beperk in belang van ander individue. Die bekendste voorbeeld hiervan is die burereg, wat bepaal dat die grondeienaar nie sy grond sodanig mag gebruik dat dit ‘n onredelike las of nadeel vir bure inhou nie. Die redelikheidsmaatstaf bepaal in hierdie omstandighede dat ‘n eienaar van onroerende eiendom sy eiendomsbevoegdhede binne redelike perke mag uitoefen, en dat die buureienaar of okkupeerder die eienaar se eiendomsbevoegdheid binne redelike perke moet verduur.

Ander voorbeelde van die toepassing van die redelikheidskriterium in die geval van burereg is die verpligting tot sydelingse en oppervlaktesteun, maatreëls met betrekking tot geboue wat erfgrense oorskry, die wedersydse verpligting ten opsigte van natuurlike afvloei van water en die bekamping van gevare.

Ander persone benewens die eienaar kan ook bepaalde inhoudsbevoegdhede (byvoorbeeld gebruiksregte) ten opsigte van onroerende of roerende bates van die eienaar verkry. Houers van beperkte saaklike regte verkry inhoudsbevoegdhede ten opsigte van die saak, wat die eienaar se eiendomsreg op die saak beperk deurdat dit ‘n las op die saak teweegbring. Sulke beperkings is dus nie net teen die eienaar afdwingbaar nie, maar ook teen alle daaropvolgende eienaars van die saak. Sekere vorderingsregte van persone teen die eienaar kan ook tot gevolg hê dat sodanige regshebbendes inhoudsbevoegdhede ten opsigte van die saak verkry. Aangesien die vorderingsregte egter net teen die eienaar persoonlik afdwingbaar is en nie ‘n saaklike las tot gevolg het waardeur die saak beswaar word nie, is dit nie teen daaropvolgende eienaars afdwingbaar nie.

Hierdie artikel is ‘n algemene inligtingstuk en moet nie gebruik of staatgemaak word op as professionele advies nie. Geen aanspreeklikheid kan aanvaar word vir enige foute of weglatings of vir enige verlies of skade wat voortspruit uit vertroue op enige inligting hierin nie. Kontak atyd jou finansiële adviseur vir spesifieke en gedetailleerde advies.

Basic conditions of employment

There are basic standards which are set out in the Basic Conditions of Employment Act 75 of 1997 which regulate, amongst other, the working hours that employees are permitted to work. Whether these conditions are enforced in practice, however, is uncertain.

The Basic Conditions of Employment Act 75 of 1997 (BCEA) sets certain minimum standards of working conditions for employees. In Section 1 and 3 the BCEA sets out that it does not apply to independent contractors, as well as certain others such as unpaid volunteers, members of the South African National Defence Force and South African National Secret Service. Conditions regulating working hours are included in the BCEA which, in addition to the general exclusions mentioned above, exclude the following persons:

  • Senior managers;
  • Sales staff who travel to the premises of customers and who regulate their own work hours;
  • Employees who work less than 24 hours a month for an employer;
  • Employees earning in excess of R 205 433.30 per annum.

If you do not fall into one of the abovementioned categories then the conditions in the BCEA (Sections 9 to 15) regulating working hours will apply to you.

The maximum amount of working hours per week are 45 hours. Those who work five days a week may work for 9 hours a day and those working six or seven days a week may work for 8 hours a day. These hours may be extended by agreement between an employee and employer but this extension is limited to a maximum of an extra 15 minutes per day or, alternatively, an extra 60 minutes per week.

A meal interval of at least 1 hour is due to an employee who works continuously for more than 5 hours and at this time the employee may only be asked to perform tasks that cannot be left undone or that cannot be entrusted to another employee. If the employee is required to work during a work interval, or if they are required to be available for work, that employee must be remunerated for being available during that time.

Overtime is limited to 10 hours per week if it is arranged per agreement between an employer and employee. This can, however, be increased to 15 hours a week by means of a collective agreement but this agreement is limited in duration in that it may not apply for more than 2 months in a 12 month period. The rate at which remuneration is calculated for overtime is at 1.5 times the employee’s normal remuneration.

These are some of the basic conditions regulating working hours, and further conditions and exceptions thereto can be found in Section 9 – 18 of the BCEA. Although the abovementioned conditions seem to provide protection to employees many employees will merely take note of them and continue to work overtime continuously without pay and without complaining. Unfortunately we live in a country where there are far more people to fill jobs than jobs available and therefore the only time that this Act is properly utilised is through collective bargaining and trade unions; therefore it offers little comfort to individual employees not belonging to trade unions.

Bibliography:

  • A C Basson, M A Christianson, A Dekker, C Gerbers, P A K Le Roux, C Mischke, E M L Strydom: Essential Labour Law 5th (2009)
  • Basic Conditions of Employment Act 75 of 1997

This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied on as legal or other professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your legal adviser for specific and detailed advice.

Basiese diensvoorwaardes

Daar is basiese voorwaardes wat in die Wet op Basiese Diensvoorwaardes 75 van 1997 uiteengesit word. Die Wet reguleer, onder andere, die werksure wat werknemers toegelaat mag word om te werk. Of hierdie voorwaardes in die praktyk toegepas word, is egter onseker.

Die Wet op Basiese Diensvoorwaardes 75 van 1997 (WBD) stel sekere minimum standaarde van werksomstandighede vir werknemers. Die WBD bepaal in Artikels 1 en 3 dat dit nie van toepassing is op onafhanklike kontrakteurs, sowel as sekere ander persone soos onbetaalde vrywilligers, lede van die Suid-Afrikaanse Nasionale Weermag en die Suid-Afrikaanse Nasionale Geheime Diens nie. Voorwaardes rakende werksure is ingesluit in die WBD wat, benewens die algemene uitsluitings hierbo, die volgende persone insluit:

  • Senior bestuurders;
  • Verkoopspersoneel wat die persele van klante besoek en hul eie werksure reël;
  • Werknemers wat minder as 24 uur per maand vir ‘n werkgewer werk;
  • Werknemers wat meer as R 205 433.30 per jaar verdien.

As jy nie in een van die bogenoemde kategorieë val nie, sal die minimum standaarde in die WBD wat werksure reguleer op jou van toepassing wees.

Die maksimum aantal werksure per week is 45 ure. Diegene wat vyf dae per week werk, kan ʼn maksimum van 9 ure per dag werk en diegene wat ses of sewe dae ‘n week werk, kan ʼn maksimum van 8 ure per dag werk. Die ure kan per ooreenkoms tussen werknemer en werkgewer verleng word, maar hierdie verlenging is beperk tot ‘n maksimum van 15 minute ekstra per dag of 60 minute ekstra per week.

‘n Etenspouse van minstens 1 uur word toegeken aan ‘n werknemer wat vir meer as 5 ure aaneen gewerk het, en die werknemer mag in hierdie tyd slegs gevra word om take te doen wat nie ongedaan gelaat kan word nie of wat nie aan ‘n ander werknemer toevertrou kan word nie. As daar van die werknemer vereis word om te werk tydens sy etenspouse, of indien daar van hom verwag word om beskikbaar te wees vir werk, moet die werknemer vergoed word vir sy beskikbaarheid tydens dié tydperk.

Oortyd word tot 10 ure per week beperk as dit per ooreenkoms tussen ‘n werkgewer en werknemer gereël is. Dit kan egter tot 15 ure per week verhoog word deur middel van ‘n kollektiewe ooreenkoms, maar so ʼn ooreenkoms het beperkings en kan nie vir meer as twee maande in ‘n tydperk van 12 maande toegepas word nie. Die tarief waarteen die vergoeding vir oortyd bereken word, is 1.5 keer die werknemer se normale vergoeding.

Dit is ‘n paar van die basiese voorwaardes rakende werksure, en verdere voorwaardes en uitsonderings daarop kan in Artikel 9 – 18 van die WBD gevind word. Alhoewel die bogenoemde toestande lyk asof dit beskerming aan werknemers verskaf, sal baie mense bloot kennis daarvan neem en voortgaan om oortyd te werk sonder betaling en sonder om te kla. Ongelukkig leef ons in ‘n land waar daar baie meer mense is wat werk soek as wat daar werk beskikbaar is, dus is die enigste geval waar hierdie Wet behoorlik benut word, met kollektiewe bedinging en vakbonde; dit bied dus min troos vir individuele werknemers wat nie aan vakbonde behoort nie.

Verwysingslys:

  • A C Basson, M A Christianson, A Dekker, C Gerbers, P A K Le Roux, C Mischke, E M L Strydom Essential Labour Law 5de uitgawe (2009)
  • Wet op Basiese Diensvoorwaardes 75 van 1997

Hierdie artikel is ‘n algemene inligtingstuk en moet nie gebruik of staatgemaak word op as professionele advies nie. Geen aanspreeklikheid kan aanvaar word vir enige foute of weglatings of vir enige verlies of skade wat voortspruit uit vertroue op enige inligting hierin nie. Kontak atyd jou finansiële adviseur vir spesifieke en gedetailleerde advies.

Dealing with marriage and estate planning

The most important forms of marriage are: marriage in community of property, marriage out of community of property (without accrual), and marriage out of community of property (with accrual).

Marriage in community of property

  1. There is no prior contractual arrangement, apart from getting married;
  2. Spouses do not have two distinct estates;
  3. There is a joint estate, with each spouse having a 50% share in each and every asset in the estate (no matter in whose name it is registered);
  4. Applies to assets acquired before the marriage and during the marriage;
  5. Should one spouse incur debts in his own name it will automatically bind his/her spouse, who will also become liable for the debt;
  6. If a sequestration takes place (in the case of insolvency), the joint estate is sequestrated.

Marriage out of community of property without the accrual system

  1. An antenuptial contract (ANC) is drawn up by an attorney (who is registered as a notary), before the marriage;
  2. Where there is no contract, the marriage is automatically in community of property;
  3. The values of each spouse’s estate on going into the marriage are stipulated in the contract;
  4. A marriage by ANC means that all property owned by spouses before the date of the marriage will remain the sole property of each spouse;
  5. Each spouse controls his/her own estate exclusively without interference from the other spouse, although each has a duty to contribute to the household expenses according to his/her means;
  6. To allow for assets acquired by spouses during the marriage to remain the sole property of each spouse, the accrual system must be specifically excluded in the ANC.

Marriage out of community of property with the accrual system

  1. The accrual system automatically applies unless expressly excluded in the antenuptial contract;
  2. The accrual system addresses the question of the growth of each spouse’s estate after the date of marriage.

ESTATE PLANNING

Donations between spouses are exempt from donations tax and estate duty.

Marriage in community of property

  1. In the event of the death of one spouse, the surviving spouse will have a claim for 50% of the value of the combined estate, thus reducing the actual value of the estate by 50%. The estate is divided after all the debts have been settled in a deceased estate (not including burial costs and estate duty, as these are the sole obligations of the deceased and not the joint estate).
  2. When drafting a Last Will and Testament, spouses married in community of property need to be aware that it is only half of any asset that he or she is able to bequeath.
  3. Upon the death of one spouse, all banking accounts are frozen (even if they are in the name of one of the spouses), which could affect liquidity.
  4. Donations or bequests to someone married in community of property can be made to exclude the community of property; in other words, if the donor stipulates that the donation must not fall into the joint estate, then the donee can build up a separate estate. However, returns on such separate assets will go back to the joint estate.

Marriage out of community of property without the accrual system

Each estate planner (spouse) retains possession of assets owned prior to the marriage.

Marriage out of community of property with the accrual system

A donation from one spouse to the other spouse is excluded from the calculation of each spouse’s accrual; in other words, the recipient does not include it in his growth and the donor’s accrual is automatically reduced by the donation amount.

DIVORCE

In the event of divorce, the marriage will be dissolved by court decree, which will address such aspects as child maintenance, access, guardianship and custody, spousal maintenance, the division of assets, division of pension interests and so on.

COHABITATION AND DEFINITION OF “SPOUSE”

Cohabitation is defined as a stable, monogamous relationship where a couple who do not wish to or cannot get married, live together as spouses. The Taxation Laws Amendment Act has extended the definition of “spouses” to include “a same sex or heterosexual union which the Commissioner is satisfied is intended to be permanent”.

Many pieces of legislation, including the Pension Funds Amendment Act and the Taxation Laws Amendment Act, now define spouse to include a partner in a cohabitative relationship, the effects of which are that cohabitees will benefit from the Section 4(q) estate duty deduction in the Estate Duty Act, and the donations tax exemptions of the Income Tax Act.

This article is a general information sheet and should not be used or relied on as legal or other professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your legal adviser for specific and detailed advice.

Hantering van die huwelik en boedelbeplanning

Die belangrikste vorme van huweliksgoedere-bedeling is die huwelik binne gemeenskap van goedere, die huwelik buite gemeenskap van goedere met die uitsluiting van die aanwasbedeling, en die huwelik buite gemeenskap van goedere met die insluiting van die aanwasbedeling.

Huwelik binne gemeenskap van goedere

  1. Daar is geen vooraf kontraktuele ooreenkoms nie, afgesien van trou;
  2. Gades het nie twee afsonderlike boedels nie;
  3. Daar is ‘n gemeenskaplike boedel en elke gade het ‘n aandeel van 50% in elke bate in die boedel, ongeag in wie se naam dit geregistreer is;
  4. Dit geld vir die bates verkry voor die huwelik asook tydens die huwelik;
  5. Indien een gade skuld aangaan in sy/haar eie naam, sal sy/haar gade outomaties daardeur gebind word en ook aanspreeklik gehou word vir die skuld;
  6. Indien ‘n sekwestrasie plaasvind (in die geval van insolvensie), sal die gemeenskaplike boedel gesekwestreer word.

Huwelik buite gemeenskap van goedere met die uitsluiting van die aanwasbedeling

  1. ‘n Notariële huweliksvoorwaardekontrak (HVK) word voor die sluiting van die huwelik opgestel deur ‘n prokureur (wat geregistreer is as ‘n notaris);
  2. Indien daar geen kontrak bestaan nie, sal die huweliksbedeling outomaties binne gemeenskap van goedere wees;
  3. Die waardes van elke gade se boedel by huweliksluiting word in hierdie kontrak vervat;
  4. ‘n Huwelik met ‘n HVK beteken dat al die eiendom wat deur die gades besit word voor die datum van huweliksluiting, die eiendom van die betrokke gade sal bly;
  5. Elke gade het volle beskikkingsreg oor sy/haar eie bates (met ander woorde sonder vooraftoestemming van die ander), alhoewel daar ‘n plig rus op elke gade om volgens sy/haar vermoë by te dra tot die gesamentlike huishoudelike uitgawes;
  6. Bates verkry in die loop van die huwelik sal slegs die uitsluitlike eiendom van een gade bly indien die aanwasbedeling uitdruklik deur die gades uitgesluit word.

Huwelik buite gemeenskap van goedere met die insluiting van die aanwasbedeling

  1. Die huwelik buite gemeenskap van goedere sluit outomaties die aanwasbedeling in, tensy dit uitdruklik deur die gades in die HVK uitgesluit word;
  2. Eers met ontbinding van die huwelik tree die aanwasbedeling in werking en moet groei van elke gade se boedel vasgestel word.

BOEDELBEPLANNING

Skenkings tussen gades is vrygestel van skenkingsbelasting asook boedelbelasting.

Huwelik binne gemeenskap van goedere

  1. In die geval van die dood van ‘n eggenoot het die langslewende gade ‘n eis vir 50% van die waarde van die gesamentlike boedel en word die werklike waarde van die boedel derhalwe verminder met 50%. Die boedel word eers verdeel nadat al die skuld vereffen is (begrafniskoste en boedelbelasting word hierby uitgesluit, aangesien die oorledene en nie die gemeenskaplike boedel nie, hiervoor aanspreeklik is).
  2. By die opstel van ‘n testament is dit belangrik dat gades wat getroud is binne gemeenskap van goedere, bewus moet wees daarvan dat hy/sy slegs die helfte van ‘n bate bemaak.
  3. By die dood van ‘n eggenoot word alle bankrekenings gevries (selfs al is die rekenings slegs in een van die gades se naam). Dit kan ‘n invloed hê op likiditeit.
  4. Skenkings of erflatings aan iemand getroud binne gemeenskap van goedere kan ook uitgesluit word van die gemeenskaplike boedel. Die skenker kan met ander woorde bepaal dat die skenking nie binne die gemeenskaplike boedel moet val nie. Die ontvanger daarvan sal dan ‘n afsonderlike    boedel kan opbou maar die opbrengs van sodanige afsonderlike bates sal weer binne die        gesamentlike boedel val.

Huwelik buite gemeenskap van goedere met die uitsluiting van die aanwasbedeling

Elke boedelbeplanner (gade) behou besit van bates wat voor die huwelik verkry is.

Huwelik buite gemeenskap van goedere met die insluiting van die aanwasbedeling

‘n Skenking van een gade aan die ander gade word uitgesluit by die berekening van elke gade se             aanwas. Die ontvanger van die geskenk kan dit met ander woorde nie in berekening bring             wanneer die groei van sy/haar aanwas vasgestel word nie en die skenker se aanwas word             outomaties verminder met die skenkingsbedrag.

EGSKEIDING

In die geval van egskeiding word die huwelik ontbind deur ‘n hofbeslissing en sal die hof dan aspekte soos onderhoud vir ‘n kind, kontak (toegang), voogdyskap en sorg (toesig), onderhoud vir die gade, die verdeling van bates, verdeling van pensioenbelange, ensovoorts bepaal.

SAAMWOON EN DIE DEFINISIE VAN ‘GADE’

“Saamwoon” word gedefinieer as ‘n stabiele, vaste verhouding waar ‘n paartjie wat nie wil of kan trou nie, saamleef as gades. Die Wysigingswet op Belastingwet het die definisie van “gades” uitgebrei deur ook in te sluit “a same sex or heterosexual union which the Commissioner is satisfied is intended to be permanent”.

Verskeie stukke wetgewing soos die Wysigingswet op Pensioenfondse en Wysigingswet op die Belastingwet, definieer “gade” om ook ‘n lewensmaat in ‘n saamwoonverhouding, in te sluit. Die effek is  dat saamwoon-lewensmaats voordeel trek uit die artikel 4(q)-boedelbelastingaftrekking soos bepaal in die Boedelbelastingwet, en die skenkingsbelastingvrystelling van die Inkomstebelastingwet.

Hierdie artikel is ‘n algemene inligtingstuk en moet nie gebruik of staatgemaak word op as professionele advies nie. Geen aanspreeklikheid kan aanvaar word vir enige foute of weglatings of vir enige verlies of skade wat voortspruit uit vertroue op enige inligting hierin nie. Kontak atyd jou finansiële adviseur vir spesifieke en gedetailleerde advies.