SERVICES

HOW CAN WE HELP YOU?

CONVEYANCING / PROPERTY LAW

Our firm understands that purchasing and selling property are important milestones in both a purchaser and seller’s life and to that extent we obtain all the relevant role players details at the outset and determine what steps need to be taken to ensure a speedy transfer. Let our dedicated team assist you in transferring your most valuable possession.

Whilst death is an unfortunate event, it is a reality we all face at some point. Our firm understands the emotions that arise and deal adequately with same to ensure that the winding up of the estate is done efficiently and we aim to provide as much comfort in this stage as we possibly can.

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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is a conveyancer?

A conveyancer is a practising attorney who has obtained an additional qualification and has been admitted as same by the High Court. A conveyancer specialises in the field of transferring property from one individual to another. There are three types of attorneys that could be involved in a property transfer, namely:

  • Bond Attorneys;
  • Transferring Attorneys;
  • Bond Cancellation Attorneys

 Depending on the transfer all three attorneys could be involved in the transfer, however in every transfer there will be a transferring attorney.

Who appoints the transferring attorney?

The Seller of the property is entitled to choose the attorney who will transfer the property into the name of the purchaser. The bond and bond cancellation attorneys are appointed by the Bank.

What costs will I be liable for?

The seller will have to ensure that the following expenses are paid:

  • Rates clearance figures;
  • Levy clearance figures in respect of sectional title units;
  • Electrical compliance certificate and electrical fence certificate if applicable;
  • Bond cancellation attorneys costs;
  • Estate agents commission (if applicable);
  • Capital Gains Tax (if applicable).

The Purchaser will have to ensure that the following expenses are paid:

  • Bond Attorney’s costs (if applicable);
  • Transfer Attorney’s costs;
  • Transfer duty

Remember that transfer costs and transfer duty is determined upon the purchase price. Contact our office should you require a pro-forma of anticipated transfer costs.

What is the average time to register a property?

The standard turn- around time for a typical transfer is approximately 3 months. Each transfer differs and thus this is a guideline, it could be sooner.

COLLECTIONS

Have you rendered services or delivered goods but are unable to get payment. Warrender Attorneys offers efficient and cost effective debt collection services. We aim to obtain payment without necessarily approaching the Courts but with the ability to so should the need arise. Warrender Attorneys ensures that the end goal is always at the forefront of its debt collection processes.

  • Magistrate Court Collections
  • Regional Court Collections
  • High Court Collections
  • Sectional Titles Levy Collections
  • Medical Account Collections
  • Unsecured Debt Collections
  • Collections for unpaid Goods sold and delivered

 

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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What are the monetary jurisdictions of the various Courts?
  • Small Claims Court = R20 000-00
  • Magistrates Court= R200 000-00
  • Regional Court= R400 000-00
  • High Court= Uncapped
Why use Attorneys as opposed to debt collectors?

The untrue stereotype is that attorneys cost an arm and a leg. This is not true as debt collection tariff’s are regulated, however a debt collector will need to appoint an attorney to pursue a debt in court. The aggrieved party ends up paying debt collector fees and attorney fees. So why not approach Warrender Attorneys who can assist you with your debt collection from beginning to end.

What happens if the party that owes you money cannot be located?

We will appointing tracing agents on a no trace – no fee basis to locate the whereabouts of the party that owes you money.

What is prescription of debt and when does it apply?

Prescription is when an uninterrupted period determined by legislation has lapsed without the debt having been tacitly or expressly acknowledged by the debtor. After the lapse of this period the debt becomes unenforceable against the debtor.

The prescription periods are determined by the type of debts and are as follows: 

  • 3 years for an unsecured debt;
  • 6 years for a debt arising from a bill of exchange, negotiable instrument or notarial contract;
  • 15 years for a debt owed to the state as a result of a loan advanced, a sale or lease of land by the state to the debtor; and

30 years for a debt arising from a mortgage bond, judgment, a tax, a legislated levy or debt owed to the state arising from the profits, royalties or any sum payable from mining rights.

LITIGATION

The term litigation is often associated with fear and terror. Our dedicated team of attorneys are trained to obtain the best possible results for our clients, whether it is to settle the matter out of Court or to obtain a favourable Court order, Warrender Attorneys is up to the task. Our litigation processes are run at the most cost efficient manner. We litigate in the Magistrates Court, Regional Court, High Court Litigation, Supreme Court of Appeal and the Labour Court.

  • Damages Claims
  • Contractual Disputes
  • Debt Collection
  • Labour Disputes
  • Commercial Disputes
  • Family Law
  • Rentals and Evictions
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

When does litigation commence?

Unless any legislation provides otherwise, litigation proceedings commence upon the service of a summons or an application.

Which Court has jurisdiction to adjudicate matters?

The Magistrates Court may adjudicate any matter within its monetary jurisdiction excluding treason, divorce, a Will, murder, treason, rape, terrorism, sabotage, a person’s metal capacity or the constitutionality of a piece of legislation. The Regional Court has a wider jurisdiction in that it may hear matters of divorce, murder, rape, armed robbery and serious assault.

 

The High Court has the jurisdiction to hear all matters within its territorial jurisdiction. A declaration of constitutional invalidity by a High Court must be confirmed by the Constitutional Court.

Can I sue a Trust?

A trust is not a separate juristic entity such as a company and as such the Trust cannot be sued, however the trustees in their capacity as Trustees of a Trust can be sued. When suing the trustees each and every trustee needs to be cited in the Court papers.

What do I do if there is a judgment in my name that I do not know about?

If a judgment is granted against you erroneously or fraudulently, the Court which granted the judgment may be approached the have the judgment rescinded (removed). An application needs to be brought before Court to have the judgment removed provided that certain requirements have been satisfied.

What should I do if I am served with Summons?

When a Summons is served on you, “the Defendant”, you are afforded 10 working days upon which to deliver a Notice of Intention to Defend. Thereafter the Defendant has 20 working days to file a plea.

Should a Defendant fail to deliver a Notice of Intention to Defend or a Plea the issuing party, “the Plaintiff”, may apply to Court for Judgment by Default. It is advisable that the Defendant immediately contacts an attorney for advice particularly if the Defendant intends to defend the matter.

FAMILY LAW, DIVORCES & ANC'S

No-one thinks of getting divorced when they get married. Should the unthinkable happen, be secure in the knowledge that our experienced matrimonial attorneys will ensure tour interests are protected.

Are you getting married? Do you need an ANC? Are you aware that there are 3 matrimonial regimes? Book a consult with one of our attorneys to have all these questions answered and more. We will draft an exceptional ANC based on your personal circumstances and that of your partner’s.

We also provide numerous other family law services. 

  • Divorces
  • Antenuptial Contracts
  • Domestic Violence (protection orders)
  • Parenting Plans
  • Primary care and contact (minor children)
  • Maintenance
  • Adoptions
  • Guardianship
  • Safety and security of children
  • Co-habitation agreements
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

When must an ANC be drafted?

An ANC must be drafted and signed before a Notary Public prior to a couple says their “I do’s”

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What are the 3 marital regimes in South Africa?

Persons can be married in community of property, out of community of property with accrual, and out of community of property without the application of accrual.

What is the difference between care (custody) and contact (visitation)?

Care, in relation to children, means the primary residence and day-to-day duties of looking after a child/ren. Contact means the visiting of or being visited by the child/ren if the child/ren is living with someone else.

Can my maintenance application be changed?

The short answer is yes, an application can be made to vary the Court order.

What should I do if I am served with Summons?

When a Summons is served on you, “the Defendant”, you are afforded 10 working days upon which to deliver a Notice of Intention to Defend. Thereafter the Defendant has 20 working days to file a plea.

Should a Defendant fail to deliver a Notice of Intention to Defend or a Plea the issuing party, “the Plaintiff”, may apply to Court for Judgment by Default. It is advisable that the Defendant immediately contacts an attorney for advice particularly if the Defendant intends to defend the matter.

MEDIATION

Thinking of getting divorced or have a civil dispute but do not want to be burdened with hefty legal costs and the acrimony that results from protracted litigation proceedings. Let our mediators assist you and the other party in reaching a settlement that satisfies both party’s needs. Apart from the enormous benefits of saving time and costs, mediation allows the parties to exercise greater control over the outcome of a dispute; it is more convenient and confidential. Overall, mediation is the most beneficial for children whose parents are undergoing a divorce. Parents who are able to discuss and agree on what the best interest of the children are, save those children from a prolonged legal battle. The process of mediation should eliminate the need for children to undergo investigations and interviews and will help develop a routine immediately.

Either way, civil or family, we will tailor an agreement to your precise requirements. 

 

  • Civil (disputes between two persons, two companies or a person and a company)
  • Family law
  • Settlement agreements
  • Parenting plans
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Is mediation confidential?

Yes, unlike a matter processed by the Court, the documents and agreement reached through mediation are not filed at Court and are thus do not form part of public record.

Who pays for mediation?

This is determined early on in the mediation process and will ultimately be whatever the parties have agreed to. It could be one party, split between both parties or even divided in another ratio.

Who must attend the mediation?

Both parties must be present for each session. The reason for this is that mediation is a forum used to facilitate the parties to resolve and settle the dispute between them.

Is the outcome of mediation enforceable?

The outcome or agreement through mediation is a binding agreement between the parties. Further, it can be made an order of Court, and is thus entirely enforceable.

DECEASED ESTATES, ESTATE PLANNING & WILLS

By having a well drafted Will you will know with certainty that those whom you wish to benefit from your estate do benefit. Avoid the many pitfalls that arise from not having qualified persons assisting you in estate planning and ensuring that your Will is compliant with legislation.

We also assist Executors in the winding – up of deceased estates. Let our attorneys deal with all the requirements that are necessary in winding-up a deceased estate.

Death is a certainty of life – be prepared.

Our services includes: 

  • Estate Planning
  • Drafting of Wills
  • Administration of deceased estates
  • Creating Inter Vivo Trusts and the registration thereof with the Masters Office
  • Creating Mortus Cousa Trusts in Wills for minors and disadvantaged persons and the registration thereof with the relevant Masters Office
  • Challenging the validity of Wills
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Who needs a Will?

Anyone who owns assets should have a Will.

How can I/we protect my/our minor child/ren should I/we pass away?

By creating a Trust in your Will in which you nominate your chosen guardian to look after your minor child/ren and appoint Trustees to administer your assets for the benefit and wellbeing of your child/ren.

Can I change my Will?

A person can change their Will whenever they so choose, provided the correct formalities are complied with.

What is estate duty?

Estate duty is a form of government tax that is levied against an estate when the value of the estate exceeds a certain value.  Currently estate duty is levied at 20% on those amounts in excess of R3.5 million.

SECTIONAL TITLE AND HOME OWNER'S ASSOCIATION

We assist Body Corporates/ Homeowner’s Associations, Trustees/ Directors and Managing Agents in ensuring compliance with the ever changing Sectional Titles Act, Sectional Titles Schemes Management Act and/or Companies Act.

Errant owners – let our team assist in ensuring that owners abide by the Acts and Rules. Our team will ensure compliance with the regulations of the Community Schemes Ombudsman as well as all Acts governing sectional title and homeowner’s associations.  Rest easy, whilst we validate and enforce your rules for you.  We will also institute action on behalf of the Body Corporate/ Homeowner’s Association against all owners not timeously paying their levy contribution. 

  • Drafting rules/ Memorandum of Incorporation
  • Registering of rules/ Memorandum of Incorporation
  • Ensuring compliance with the Community Schemes Ombudsman
  • Enforcement of Scheme & Homeowners rules
  • Collection of levies
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is the difference between a sectional title and a homeowner’s association?

One of the major differences between the above is that owners of a sectional title own a specific section/unit and have an undivided share in the common areas. Whereas owners in a homeowner’s association own the house and the section of property the house is on. They are also governed by different acts and or rules.

Where are the rules registered?

The rules of a sectional title are registered at the Deeds office and with the Community Schemes Ombudsman Service (CSOS), whilst the Memorandums of Incorporation are lodged at the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission.

When should a matter be handed over?

Trustees and Directors should not allow the debt to grow to a significant amount before handing an owner over. The reasons for this are as follows: a debt prescribes after 3 years; and it is easier to collect a smaller more reasonable amount of money from an individual than it is a large one. Also, a larger debt may require further process in order to recover the monies, such as having to do attachments on movable/ immovable property.

How important is the financial position of the sectional title?

It is vital that a sectional title is in a good financial position to ensure that the sectional title scheme meets its financial obligations, such as maintaining common property. Banks and financial institutions are insisting on reviewing Scheme financials before considering granting bonds to prospective buyers in a Sectional Scheme.

Estate duty is a form of government tax that is levied against an estate when the value of the estate exceeds a certain value.  Currently estate duty is levied at 20% on those amounts in excess of R3.5 million.

LABOUR LAW

Warrender Attorneys offers a wide variety of innovative labour solutions to labour disputes. Whether you are the employer or the employee Warrender Attorneys can resolve your dispute. We represent our clients in numerous Labour Forums and we also conduct disciplinary hearings on behalf of employers. Our team of labour law attorneys pride themselves with their ability to resolve employer and employee disputes. 

  • Arbitrations
  • Labour Court Representation.
  • Disciplinary Procedures and Processes
  • CCMA
  • Labour Dispute Resolution
  • Employment Contracts
  • Legal Opinions
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

How long do I have to refer a matter to the CCMA?

Where a referral to the CCMA is based on the employee’s dismissal a 30 day time frame is afforded to the referring party. In the event of a referral based on an unfair labour practise a 90 day time frame is afforded to the referring party.

Can an attorney represent you at the CCMA?

The answer to this question depends on the stage of the matter. Legal representation is expressly prohibited in conciliation proceedings. However, a legal representative may attend these proceeding in an observatory role with leave of the commissioner.

 

Where the matter is at arbitration stage and such a matter stems from a dismissal for incapacity or misconduct a party is not entitled to legal representation unless both parties consent thereto and/or the commissioner exercises his discretion to permit legal representation. In exercising his/her discretion the commissioner must consider the nature of the questions of law, complexity of the dispute, public interest and the ability of the opposing party to deal with the dispute.

What is procedural and substantive fairness?

Procedural fairness refers to the fairness of the procedure followed by the employer in the disciplinary process. Substantive fairness refers to the gravity of the alleged offence i.e. there is no substance in disciplining an employee for a trivial offence.

What are my rights at a disciplinary hearing?

An employee has the right to be represented by a fellow employee or a representative of recognised trade union and to have the charges clearly and concisely set out to him/her. The most significant right during disciplinary hearings is the right to be heard and given sufficient time to prepare for the hearing.

COMMERCIAL LAW

Are you sure that the contract you are about to enter into is compliant with legislation, is valid and protects your rights. Let our experienced commercial attorneys assist you with the drafting and vetting of commercial contracts.

 Is your Company or Close Corporation compliant with current legislation, let us assist you in ensuring that your business operates within prevailing legislation. 

We can assist with the following: 

  • New business or joint venture agreements;
  • Business Rescue or Liquidation Applications
  • Shareholder Agreements and Memorandums of Incorporations
  • Corporate Governance
  • Lease agreements (residential & commercial).
  • Arbitrations
  • Distribution Agreements, Resell Agreements, Supplier Agreements
  • Sale of Share / Business Agreements
  • BBBEEE agreements
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Is an oral/verbal agreement binding?

Generally yes, however there is legislation that requires agreements to be reduced to writing such as the sale of immovable property. To avoid uncertainty it is always recommended that agreements be reduced to writing and signed by the relevant parties.

Do I need a Shareholders Agreement for my business?

 

A Shareholders agreement regulates the shareholders relationship among each other and the business. Amongst other things, it provides certainty as to what is to happen should a shareholder want to sell his shares or dies, voting rights of shareholders, which decisions require a simple majority vote or otherwise, what happens if there is a deadlock amongst shareholders.

I have an oral agreement in place done over a handshake?

The problem arises when a dispute occurs between the parties or one or both party dies / leaves the business, the onus of proving the terms of the agreement becomes difficult or clouded. Rather spend the money upfront to enter into a well drafted agreement than spend tens of thousands of Rand trying to prove or defend your agreement.