The year that was - 2017

As the year-end approaches we take a look at a few of the conveyancing stories, issues and articles which caught the eye of readers in 2017.

Casting my eye over the 370 or so articles published in the GhostDigest during 2017, a number of newsworthy and interesting ones spring to prominence and are worthy of a revisit before PCs are switched off, offices shut and holidays embarked upon. They are in no particular order the following:

Jordaan v City of Tshwane
The culmination of a series of cases in which it was ruled that holding new owners of properties for municipal debts older than two years under the provisions of Section 118(3) of the Local Government: Municipal Systems Act No 32 of 2000 is unconstitutional and amounts to an improper and arbitrary deprivation of a property right.

Agents appearing
Allen West considered the question of whether it is appropriate for an agent to appear before a Notary Public to execute notarial attested documents.

Conveyancing Tables – May 2017
By far the most used resource on the GhostDigest. A number of changes were made this year to reflect changes in Transfer Duty, Deeds Office fees and the Recommended Guideline of fees. These changes came into effect in the following order – Transfer Duty: 1st March, Deeds Office fees: 1st April and Recommended Guideline of Fees: 1st May.

In Wasted costs question and Wasted costs question - II
A question about liability for wasted conveyancing costs payable to the conveyancer where a transaction is cancelled due to the non-performance by the seller, saw a number of contributions and suggestions in an attempt to address the problem.

Topical query
An interesting and topical question about what factors need to be considered in a sale where a seller sells his home for a purchase price reflected as a crypto or a foreign currency?

GhostConvey 2017 survey
The results of our survey are in and ready to be sorted and collated to be published in January.

Cyberscam targeting conveyancers
Carmel Rickard discussed Lochner v Schaefer Incorporated and Others in which compensation was sought from conveyancers who had fallen victim to a cyberscam.

Estate problem
Gave rise to a large number of responses in attempting to answer the question of how one deals with land in a Liquidation and Distribution account when nobody wants to own it.

Section 4(2) application
Here Allen West discussed s 4(2) of the Sectional Titles Act which provides relief when a scheme is opened on more than one piece of land which can't be consolidated.

Beware the bond clause
A bond clause offers standard protection to the buyer and is suspensive, it must be drafted precisely to avoid any room for argument - Jack Crook reported.

Proof of valid customary marriages
Allen West suggested a solution to problems which arise when Deeds Offices insist on a registration certificate or order of court to prove the validity of a customary marriage.

Clearance certificate(s) question
Many contributions were received about the question Noëlene van der Wal asked i.e. "Who has to pay for the levy clearance certificate and who has to pay for the rates clearance certificate?"

No resolution
An interesting question involving a CC seller with a member who signed the Offer to Purchase without a resolution, a defauting buyer, who paid a small deposit, and an estate agent.

Registrars’ Conference Resolutions
And lastly a stocking filler: The Complete Compilation of and Index to Registrars' Conference Resolutions has been updated with a CD and remains an essential resource for conveyancing professionals.

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