All posts by mysimplifiedlaw

LLB-Nelson Mandela University, South Africa LLM-Nelson Mandela University, South Africa

Can I Be Sued For Breaking Off An Engagement?

We Have Simple Answers For You!

Although there are no formal requirements for you to enter into a valid engagement, there is a question whether you can be sued for breaking up an engagement. In the past, the aggrieved person could claim for breach of promise under the common law.

However, the law is always changing.

In the South African case Van Jaarsveld v Bridges (click here for the full case)   the court dismissed a woman’s claims for damages. The Court held that the law relating engagements is outdated.This decision was confirmed in Cloete v Maritz (click here for the full case).

However, you can still be sued by your former fiance or fiancee for actual expenses that he or she incurred in the process of preparing for the wedding such as venue hire, decor etc.

You may break off an engagement without any financial consequence if there is a just cause such as your partner being unfaithful.

We hope this has been as useful as it is simple.

Disclaimer

The information contained on https://mysimplifiedlaw.wordpress.com at providing you with guidance on the South African law. We have ensured that this information is accurate, however, the law is constantly being changed. Although we have tried to keep this information accurate, we cannot guarantee that there are no omissions or errors. Therefore, http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.wordpress.com will not , under any circumstance accept liability for or be held liable for consequences resulting from the use or inability to use the information by the reader or negligence by us in relation to the information used. Every person has unique circumstances and this information has not been provided to meet individual requirements.

The Rights to the images used on http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.com and its social media belong to their respective owners. Please contact us for any queries in this regard.

 

 

Do I Need a Prenuptial Agreement?

We Have Simple Answers for You!

What is a Prenuptial Agreement?

In South Africa, Prenuptial Agreements better known as “Prenups” are called Antenuptial  Agreements. This is an agreement entered into by a couple before they get married which aims at protecting their individual interests.

What are my Options?

You can choose between

  1. An Antenuptial Agreement without Accrual

    In the event of your death or a divorce, your spouse is only entitled to what he or she has accumulated over the course of the marriage. If your spouse is declared insolvent, you will be protected from any creditors. Lastly, if you fail to support yourself financially, your partner will be legally obliged to support you.

  2. An Antenuptial Agreement with Accrual

    Before you enter into marriage, you and your spouse will list down all the assets you want to be excluded from the accrual. Whatever is then accumulated during the period of the marriage by both spouses is divided equally. Each partner is financially independent.

What Happens if I do not get a Prenuptial Agreement?

In South Africa, if you do not have a prenuptial agreement, you are automatically married in community of property, meaning that everything is shared 50/50. If you fail to acquire a prenup before you enter the marriage, you may enter a post nuptial contract after you are married.

We hope this has been as useful as it is simple.

Disclaimer

The information contained on https://mysimplifiedlaw.wordpress.com at providing you with guidance on the South African law. We have ensured that this information is accurate, however, the law is constantly being changed. Although we have tried to keep this information accurate, we cannot guarantee that there are no omissions or errors. Therefore, http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.wordpress.com will not , under any circumstance accept liability for or be held liable for consequences resulting from the use or inability to use the information by the reader or negligence by us in relation to the information used. Every person has unique circumstances and this information has not been provided to meet individual requirements.

The Rights to the images used on http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.com and its social media belong to their respective owners. Please contact us for any queries in this regard.

 

 

 

Can I Install a Nanny Camera?

We Have Simple Answers for You!

In South Africa, the use of electronic devises to monitor or record your employee is regulated by the  Regulation of Interception of Communications and Provision of Communication-Related Information Act 70 of 2002 (“RICA”).

Can I use a camera to record my nanny?

  • Yes. However, according to RICA, you have to get written consent from your nanny, stating that she is aware that he/she will be recorded or monitored and that he/she is okay with it.  This requirement must be met although it can be argued that in most cases, it defies the purpose of catching the nanny doing something wrong.
  • Failure to acquire this written consent is a criminal offence and a fine or imprisonment may be imposed upon conviction.
  • The nanny’s right to privacy must be respected. This means that you may not put cameras in certain rooms such as the bathroom or bedroom, where there is an expectancy of privacy. You must also specify the rooms that will be monitored/ recorded.

Can I use the recordings in court?

Yes, the recording can be used in both civil and criminal proceedings provided:

  • all the requirements are met
  • the recording is audible and clearly shows what happened
  •  the recording can be authenticated, meaning it has not been tampered with.

We hope this has been as useful as it is simple. 

Disclaimer

The information contained on https://mysimplifiedlaw.wordpress.com at providing you with guidance on the South African law. We have ensured that this information is accurate, however, the law is constantly being changed. Although we have tried to keep this information accurate, we cannot guarantee that there are no omissions  or errors. Therefore, http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.wordpress.com will not , under any circumstance accept liability for or be held liable for  consequences resulting from the use or inability to use the information by the reader or negligence by us in relation to the information used. Every person has unique circumstances and this information has not been provided to meet individual requirements.

The Rights to the images used on http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.com and its social media belong to their respective owners. Please contact us for any queries in this regard.

Is the Supplier Responsible for the Delivery of my Goods?

We Have Simple Answers for You!

The delivery of goods you buy is regulated by the Consumer Protection Act which aims to protect your rights as a consumer. You can find this Act by clicking here:  Consumer Protection Act.

The supplier of goods is responsible for the delivery of the goods you have bought. These goods must be delivered

  • on the agreed date and at the agreed time- if no date or time has been agreed upon, then the supplier must deliver the goods within a reasonable time after you have bought the goods. If you and the supplier did not agree on a specific time for delivery, the suppler cannot deliver the goods at an unreasonable time.
  • at the agreed place- if the agreed place is the supplier’s place of business and the supplier does not have a place of business, then the goods must be delivered at the supplier’s home.
  • at the cost of the supplier.

The goods remain at the supplier’s risk until you have accepted delivery. This means that if the goods are lost or damaged before you have accepted delivery, the supplier is responsible.

These implied conditions only apply if you and the supplier have not entered into an agreement that states otherwise.

When are Goods Considered ‘Delivered’

You are considered to have accepted delivery when

  • you directly or indirectly communicate to the supplier that you have accepted delivery of the goods you bought.
  • when the goods are delivered to you and you do something that shows that the supplier no longer owns the goods, for example, you open the goods and start using them as your own.
  • a reasonable time passes and you do not communicate to the supplier that you are rejecting the goods.

Upon your request, the supplier must give you a reasonable opportunity to examine the goods to check if the goods are

  • of the quality and type reasonably contemplated in the agreement of sale.
  • the goods you requested if it is a special order. 

If the goods are delivered at a different place, date or time that agreed, you may

  • accept the goods at that place, date or time.
  • request that the goods be delivered at the place, date or time you agreed on.
  • cancel the agreement and treat all delivered goods as unsolicited goods.

We hope this has been as useful as it is simple. 

Disclaimer

The information contained on http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.wordpress.com aims at providing you with guidance on the South African law. We have ensured that this information is accurate, however, the law is constantly being changed. Although we have tried to keep this information accurate, we cannot guarantee that there are no omissions  or errors. Therefore, http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.wordpress.com will not , under any circumstance accept liability for or be held liable for  consequences resulting from the use or inability to use the information by the reader or negligence by us in relation to the information used. Every person has unique circumstances and this information has not been provided to meet individual requirements.

The Rights to the images used on http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.com and its social media belong to their respective owners. Please contact us for any queries in this regard.

How Do I Enter Into A Civil Union?

We Have Simple Answers For You!

A Civil Union is a voluntary union of two persons (male and female or same sex ) who are over the age of 18. This union has to satisfy the following requirements found in the Civil Union Act. You can find this Act by clicking here: Civil Union Act.

  • You cannot enter into a Civil Union if you are already married under the Marriage Act or the Recognition of Customary Marriages Act
  • If you were previously married, you must present a certified copy of your divorce order or death certificate of your former spouse to the Marriage Officer.
  • You may only enter into a civil union if, apart from the fact that you and your partner are of the same sex, you would be able to enter into a marriage under the Marriage Act.
  •  A Marriage Officer may refuse to solemnise your civil union if there is an objection and proof of a lawful impediment to your proposed union.
  • A Civil union must be solemnised in the presence of both you and your spouse and 2 competent witnesses.
  • You may not enter into a Civil Union through a representative.

We hope this has been as useful as it is simple. 

Disclaimer

The information contained on http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.wordpress.com aims at providing you with guidance on the South African law. We have ensured that this information is accurate, however, the law is constantly being changed. Although we have tried to keep this information accurate, we cannot guarantee that there are no omissions  or errors. Therefore, http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.wordpress.com will not , under any circumstance accept liability for or be held liable for  consequences resulting from the use or inability to use the information by the reader or negligence by us in relation to the information used. Every person has unique circumstances and this information has not been provided to meet individual requirements.

The Rights to the images used on http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.com and its social media belong to their respective owners. Please contact us for any queries in this regard.

How Do I Deal with Noisy Neighbours?

We Have Simple Answers For You!

The Noise Regulations and the Environment Conservation Act regulate the amount of noise you and your neighbours are both allowed to make. You may find this Act by clicking here: The Environment Conservation Act

What is Considered A Noisy Neighbour?

Your neighbour has the right to undisturbed use and enjoyment of his/her property. However, this  right can be limited if it becomes a nuisance to surrounding neighbours.

There is a distinction in our law between

a) a disturbing noise

This is an objective noise which can be scientifically measured.

An Example of a disturbing noise is a loud braai next door with loud music and shouting.

b) a noise nuisance

This is a noise that disturbs or impairs you subjectively.

An example is a dog that will not stop barking, loud machinery or a loud motorbike that is constantly waking you up at night.

What Can I do?

If you are facing a disturbing noise from a neighbour, the first step would be to kindly request your neighbours to tone it down to an acceptable level. If this does not work, a quick call to the South African Police Service(SAPS) will usually be enough.
If you are facing a noise nuisance, you can take the following steps:

  • report to your local authority- your neighbour may be asked to reduce the noise level, pay a fine or remove the source of the noise.
  • apply to the court for an interdict (a document that will instruct your neighbour to stop the noise.) The court will consider facts like the time the noise occurs and the efforts your neighbour has made to reduce the noise level.

The Court will also consider whether you are not overly sensitive and whether any  reasonable person in your position would be affected by the noise too.

  • sue your neighbour to compensate you for any loss you have suffered as a result of the noise. For example, if you lost income because the noise was too much for you to work.
  • if your neighbour continues even after the interdict, your neighbour may be forced to pay a heavy fine or be imprisoned for contempt of court (which means ignoring the orders of the court.)

A fine for violating Noise Control Regulations can be up to R20 000 or imprisonment for up to 2 years.

We hope this has been as useful as it is simple. 

Disclaimer

The information contained on http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.wordpress.com aims at providing you with guidance on the South African law. We have ensured that this information is accurate, however, the law is constantly being changed. Although we have tried to keep this information accurate, we cannot guarantee that there are no omissions  or errors. Therefore, http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.wordpress.com will not , under any circumstance accept liability for or be held liable for  consequences resulting from the use or inability to use the information by the reader or negligence by us in relation to the information used. Every person has unique circumstances and this information has not been provided to meet individual requirements.

The Rights to the images used on http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.com and its social media belong to their respective owners. Please contact us for any queries in this regard.

 

 

 

 

 

Should I Pay a Fee When I Cancel a Booking, Reservation or Order?

We Have Simple Answers For You!

The Consumer Protection Act protects you, the consumer from unfair business practices by people selling goods or offering you services. You may find the full Act by clicking here: Consumer Protection Act

Can I Cancel A Booking, Reservation or Order?

YES.

You have the right to cancel any booking, reservation or order you may have made in advance such as a hotel room, a wedding venue or wedding cake. However, this rule does not apply to goods that have been especially made for you, known as special order goods.

Can I Be Forced to Pay a Cancellation Fee?

Yes.

The supplier, for example a hotel or baker may have already asked you for a reasonable booking fee or deposit in advance. The supplier is, by law allowed to deduct a reasonable cancellation fee from that deposit.

What is a “reasonable” Cancellation Fee?

A reasonable cancellation fee is determined by:

  • the nature of the goods or services; a popular hotel in a busy tourist location may charge you more for cancellation.
  • the length of cancellation you gave the hotel/ baker.
  • whether there is reasonable potential for the hotel/baker that is acting diligently to find another person between the time you cancelled and the date you had the hotel room reserved for you
  • the normal rules of practice in that relevant industry. This means that if the hotel industry usually takes 20% of the booking fee when a booking is cancelled, that 20% is considered the reasonable cancellation fee.

What If The Cancellation Was Beyond My Control?

In some cases , you have no option but to cancel a booking, reservation or order. The hotel/baker cannot force you to pay a cancellation fee if the cancellation was because of the death or hospitalisation of the person the booking/ reservation was supposed to benefit.

Therefore, if you made a hotel booking for your mother on Mother’s day and she gets hospitalised on the day, the hotel cannot force you to pay a cancellation fee, even though you yourself are well on the day. This is because the person who was supposed to benefit from the booking is unable to make it.

We hope this has been as useful as it is simple. 

Disclaimer

The information contained on http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.wordpress.com aims at providing you with guidance on the South African law. We have ensured that this information is accurate, however, the law is constantly being changed. Although we have tried to keep this information accurate, we cannot guarantee that there are no omissions  or errors. Therefore, http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.wordpress.com will not , under any circumstance accept liability for or be held liable for  consequences resulting from the use or inability to use the information by the reader or negligence by us in relation to the information used. Every person has unique circumstances and this information has not been provided to meet individual requirements.

The Rights to the images used on http://www.mysimplifiedlaw.com and its social media belong to their respective owners. Please contact us for any queries in this regard.

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