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Kramer Villion Norris - KVN October 2017
 
 
 
How the “Historical Rates” Judgment Affects You
 
A recent Constitutional Court judgment held that municipalities can no longer force a new property buyer to pay the seller’s “old” municipal debts for rates, municipal services etc.  

Before that judgment, you were at risk of buying a house thinking that all you had to pay was the purchase price and transfer costs, and then later finding out that you were also in for historical municipal debts that had been run up by previous owners.  

A lot of money could be at stake here – R6.5m in one of the matters in question.

How does this decision affect buyers, sellers, agents and municipalities?  Read on for an  analysis of what it all means to you in practical terms …
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Small Businesses and POPI: Not Crying Wolf This Time?  
 
 
Security Complexes: Can You Use Telkom Ducting for Fibre?  
 
 
Do You Need an “Advance Directive” or a “Living Will”?  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
POPI (the Protection of Personal Information Act) will provide welcome protection for our personal information – our names, ID numbers, addresses, medical histories and so on.

But the other side of the coin is that it will expose small businesses in particular to a whole new raft of onerous obligations and risks. 

The problem is that there have been so many false alarms as to when POPI’s compliance provisions will actually commence, that many of us have lost sight of just how heavy a burden it will place on our businesses.

We take a look at how the commencement process is now strongly underway, and at what you need to know now about POPI.
 
 
 

“Possession is nine-tenths of the law” (wise old idiom) 

“Superfast broadband” – we all want it, and an increasing number of South African homes and businesses are getting it with optic fibre. 

Once you are in a “fibre area” it’s easy to run cabling into your premises, unless you live or work in a community scheme - how does your chosen fibre supplier physically run cabling to your individual properties?  

You will need underground ducting, and first prize will always be to use existing infrastructure.  Telkom ducting is invariably a prime candidate, but what if you aren’t using Telkom as your supplier?  We discuss a recent High Court case dealing with exactly that question… 
 
 
 
If you don’t want to be kept artificially alive - without your consent and perhaps in pain and distress - long after your medical condition becomes hopeless, you need to communicate your decision now to the doctors, hospitals and loved ones who will be caring for you at the end.

Incapacitation can strike without warning and at any time, so prioritise this whilst you are still mentally and physically competent to express your wishes.  

Should you make some form of advance medical directive and if so, what type?  What should you put in it?  Will it be honoured?  We address the answers to these questions and more …

 
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Fighting Fake News
 
“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance” (George Bernard Shaw)


 “Fake News” is big business in 2017.  Social Media in particular is increasingly awash with it because it is so easily propagated via unsuspecting readers duped into endorsing and sharing it.  The problem is that our brains are literally programmed to get an emotional kick out of information regardless of its accuracy – Time Magazine’s “Why People Can't Agree on Basic Facts” here explains why.

That’s dangerous - we can’t afford to rely on false facts when making important decisions on things like how to plan a direction for our businesses, how to invest, how to vote, how to deal with a social or medical problem etc.  

So learn how to spot the lies and how to sift the fact from the fiction - a good start is to read “How to Spot Fake News Sites” on WikiHow.  

And don’t become part of the problem by mindlessly forwarding/sharing anything with even the slightest whiff of fakery or sensationalism – check it out first on Snopes.

 
 
 
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Disclaimer

This Newsletter 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.

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