Joburg Advocacy Group (JAG): MUNICIPALITY CAN'T NAIL YOU FOR HISTORIC DEBT

Monday, 16 October 2017

MUNICIPALITY CAN'T NAIL YOU FOR HISTORIC DEBT


The Constitutional Court has ruled that municipalities cannot hold new property owners responsible for the historic debt of previous owners. The Court has found that, contrary to claims by municipalities, they are not vested with security for historic debt over a property belonging to a new purchaser.

This will comes as a relief to buyers, many of whom have previously been forced to cough up large and unexpected amounts of money to settle the debts of previous owners in order to have their municipal services connected.

A word of caution, though: the Municipal Systems Act (Act 32 of 2000) prohibits the transfer of a property unless all debts due to the municipality in connection with the property arising over the preceding two years have been fully paid.

So if you're thinking of purchasing a property, be sure to check out whether the municipal bill for that property is in good standing or not.

More about this issue in a blog post by Bruno Simao Attorneys here.

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