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July 2021 NEWSLETTER
Buying Property from a Company – Should You Buy the Shares or the House?

Buying the house of your dreams presents you with much excitement but also with a number of choices.

For example, if the property is held in a company the seller might offer you the choice of buying the company shares. That way you effectively get ownership of the house without all the delay and cost of a regular property transfer. What should you do?

We discuss some of the main factors you should consider, and also address the old question of whether you could save yourself a bundle of money by avoiding transfer duty.

We end off with a note on buying property from a trust.

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Spousal Maintenance After Divorce and the “Clean Break” Principle
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Getting divorced is a messy and uncertain business at the best of times, and whilst our courts will always ensure that dependent children are protected financially with a child maintenance order, the question of whether or not the financially weaker spouse can demand personal maintenance from the financially stronger spouse is a question for the court’s discretion.

We consider how that discretion is applied in practice with reference to a bitter divorce dispute in which the wife claimed “permanent” maintenance for herself whilst the husband made a counter-offer of “rehabilitative” maintenance for a set period. The “clean break” principle proved key to the outcome.

   
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R4m Damages for a Workplace Sexual Assault
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Employers who don’t adequately address the problem of sexual harassment in the workplace can expect to pay the price in court. As can the perpetrators themselves.

We look at the case of a woman whose decade long trek through the courts has finally resulted in a damages payout of just under R4m. The employer and the perpetrator are “jointly and severally” liable for both the damages and for a no-doubt substantial legal bill.

Our discussion of the judgment leads us through the factors taken into account by the Court and quotes extensively from its scathing attack on the “supine approach of bovine resignation” adopted by the employer.

   
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Bodies Corporate: Before You Sequestrate to Recover Arrears…
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It is one of a Body Corporate’s most important functions to collect any arrear levies in a sectional title scheme as efficiently and quickly as possible.

In doing so it has a choice of collection options open to it, and one of those options is to apply for the sequestration of the defaulting owner’s personal estate. Even just the threat of sequestration might incentivise a recalcitrant debtor to pay up, but if not and if the sequestration order is granted, the Body Corporate becomes the “petitioning creditor” and risks having to pay into the estate to cover the “costs of sequestration”.

A recent Supreme Court of Appeal decision shows how and when such a risk may arise, and after analysing the facts and the law involved, we’ll list the other avenues of collection open to any Body Corporate in the same position.

   
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Your Website of the Month: How to Plan and Hold Virtual Board Meetings
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Virtual meetings are here to stay. Make the most of them with “Optimising the virtual boardroom: A guide to planning and executing virtual board meetings” from Nasdaq Governance Solutions on Moneyweb.

Learn how to –

  • “Build a virtual board table” (“creating a virtual seating arrangement” and so on),

  • “Mitigate meeting day glitches” (we’ve all wasted time on fiascos!), and 

  • “Keep it confidential” (paramount).
   







Disclaimer

The information provided herein should not be used or relied on as 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 professional adviser for specific and detailed advice.


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