Q: I recently drafted my will, leaving my estate to my three daughters. Is this a problem?

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...

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Provisions of Section 197 Labour Relations Act – Transfer of contract of employment

Are you contemplating 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: S197. Transfer of contract of employment (1) In this section and in section 197A – (a) ‘business’ includes the whole or a part of any business, trade, undertaking or...

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Q: Am I allowed to search customers’ handbags before they leave the store?

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....

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Is an unregistered ANC enforceable?

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. And so it is that in between the mad, exhilarating, often frustrating,...

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Q: I have drafted my will using a template. Are there any additional requirements, or do I just need to sign it?

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...

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