I need to store my signed will somewhere. I took it to my bank, but they want to charge me a monthly fee for storing it. It’s just a three-page document, and I don’t want to pay monthly fees for the rest of my life. What should I do with it?

A:

There’re no legal requirements around the storing of your will. There are institutions, such as banks, that offer a safe-keeping service. But this is generally for a fee, unless you’ve named them as the executor in your will. The main thing is for you to ensure that your original will is stored in a safe place and is easily accessible by your loved ones. You could consider the following: Read More.....

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I recently drafted my will, leaving my estate to my three daughters. My eldest daughter’s son signed as a witness, together with my neighbour. A friend expressed concern about this – but my grandson is officially an adult (he’s 19) and he’s not named in my will. Is this a problem?

A: 

Generally speaking, anyone who stands to inherit under your will cannot witness your will. In your case, whether or not your grandson can sign depends on how your will is worded. The challenge is the following: what if your eldest daughter dies before you do? Admittedly this is not something you care to contemplate. But life is unpredictable, and your will should be flexible enough to take unexpected life events into account. One of following could happen: Read More.....

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Are you thinking about buying a business that has employees? If so, then make sure that you know about and comply with the provisions of the Labour Relations Act. In particular, you need to be aware of section 197 which deals with the transfer of the employment contract from the old employer to the new employer. Section 197 of the Labour Relations Act states the following: Read More.....

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I’m opening up a retail store soon. One of my biggest fears is how to address the issue of shoplifting. Am I allowed to search customers’ handbags before they leave the store?

A:

You have a very valid concern. Retail stores are plagued by shoplifting, and need a way of managing and monitoring this risk. If you are able to demonstrate that there are reasonable grounds for suspecting a customer of shoplifting, you can protect your interests by confronting the customer with your suspicions and requiring that their belongings be searched. Provided you do this very, very carefully. Read More.....

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In South Africa, marriages are governed by one of two marital regimes:

  • In community of property; or
  • Out of community of property

Getting married in community of property requires the couple to do precisely nothing. They just get hitched and ride off into the sunset. South African law provides that when a couple gets married the marriage is automatically presumed to be in community of property – unless the couple sign an AnteNuptial Contract prior to getting married. Read More.....

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A:

Once you’re comfortable that your Will unambiguously reflects your wishes, you need to sign it. You need to be aware of the following requirements:

  • You must sign your will in the presence of two witnesses. You can’t sign it, then later ask your witnesses to sign it. They need to witness that you did, indeed, sign your will, your signature wasn’t fraudulent, and you weren’t under any duress or in any way pressurised by someone to sign it against your wishes. You and your witnesses must sign every page of the will, not just the last page.
  • The following people cannot sign your will as a witness:
    • Anyone who is under the age of 16 years
    • Anyone who is not of sound mind
    • Anyone named as a beneficiary in your will
    • Anyone named as an heir in your will
    • Anyone who is married to a person named as an heir or beneficiary in your will

    Once it has been signed, your original Will should be stored in a safe place and be easily accessible by your loved ones, and specifically your executor. It is also strongly recommended that you tell your loved ones that you’ve signed a will, and inform them where the will is being stored. You could also consider giving someone you trust a certified copy of your will for safekeeping. Read More.....

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Retail outlets need to exercise reasonable care when searching customers’ belongings on a suspicion of shoplifting. Because customers may have a claim against a store if their belongings are searched without justification. The retail store may be in the firing line if its employees are found to have crossed the line.

Here are the facts of the 2015 case of Pieterse v Clicks: Pieterse was a customer shopping in a Clicks store. A Clicks employee confronted her and accused her of shoplifting. Pieterse’s handbag was duly searched – but there was no evidence of any stolen goods. Pieterse then sued Clicks and its employee for defamation and injuria (or injured feelings). When the Magistrate’s Court dismissed Pieterse’s claim, Pieterse took the matter on appeal to the High Court. The High Court held that: Read More.....

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My boyfriend and I have been dating for over a year and are ready to take the next step by moving in together. We are currently looking for a townhouse to buy. My boyfriend has suggested that he buys the townhouse in his name, seeing as he already has the pre-approval for a bond. He will pay the bond, rates, levies and electricity each month. I will pay for the other household expenses such as the groceries, DSTV, household insurance, the cleaner’s wages and entertainment. I suggested to him that we record this arrangement in a Cohabitation Agreement but he didn’t seem to think that was necessary. Are there any advantages in signing one?    Read More.....

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The world. And all the stars in the sky. And everything that goes with it. And more if that’s possible. That’s what a starry-eyed lover is willing and all too eager to present the love of their life with. As time goes by the allure dissipates, the passion fades, the veneered mask of new-love slips off, exposing our protagonists in all their human glory, warts and all. And when the axe falls on the last tenuous threads of their relationship, all memory of their love-struck promises evaporates. Well, that may be true of the erstwhile promiser’s memory. The expectant recipient, however, suffers no such impairment. Indeed, the details of the promises are so sharp that even the embellishments are crystal-clear. Enforcing the fulfillment of those promises, however, can prove slightly challenging. Read More.....

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