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Estate Planning Articles

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  • Freedom Of Testation

    Can I choose who to benefit in my will?

    In South Africa, a person can leave his or her assets to whoever he likes, with few limitations. This is called “freedom ...

  • No interest on loans to trusts

    One way of avoiding estate duty and donations tax is to sell an asset to a family trust for a market related value.

    The rationale is to freeze the growth ...

  • If I am married in community of property, what can I leave in my will?

    A client asked: What are the implications when folks get married in community of property after a property was purchased in any one’s name, draw up a will and one ...

  • A grandparents’ duty to support their grandchild

    When is a grandparent liable to maintain a grandchild?

    These are the legal principles:

    • Both parents are jointly obliged to support their child on his birth. This common-law obligation is called the ...
    • The importance of the independent trustee

      A well-known court case, Land Bank of South Africa vs JL Parker and Two Others (the Parker case) irrevocably changed the requirements for independent trustees to be appointed and placed renewed focus ...

    • Attorneys as trustees beware!

      By Mervin Messias

      I would like to bring to the attention of attorneys an issue that I consider to be highly relevant in the context of trust law. As far as ...

    • Is An Enduring Power Of Attorney Binding In South Africa?

      Does my mom’s power of attorney endure if she can’t manage her affairs?

      A person has full contractual capacity if he or she can conclude a legally binding contract. A party’s ...

    • Overseas assets and your will

      If you have offshore assets, it’s a good idea to have separate wills, one for your assets in South Africa, and the other/s for assets in each country where you ...

    • Must a pension fund give effect to the wishes of the deceased?

      The issue before the court was who a pension fund must pay the death benefits to. In a beneficiary nomination form, the deceased nominated only his mother and his daughter. ...

    • Capacity to benefit under a will

      The following persons are disqualified from benefitting under a will:

      1) A person who has unduly influenced the person who wrote the will to give him a benefit under the will.

      2) ...

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