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Hammond Pole Blog

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Using Workers’ Month to Know More About Your Rights: New Earning Thresholds

May is Workers' Month and an opportunity for both employers and employees to ensure they are up to date with all relevant labour legislation as well as with contractual rights and responsibilities in their particular workplace.   From 1 April, 2024, the basic earnings threshold as stipulated in the Basic Conditions of Employment Act (BCEA) was increased from R241 110.59 per annum to R254 371.67 (or from R20 092.55 to R21 197.63 per month, representing a 5.5 per cent increase from 2023’s thresholds). Basic earnings are calculated before any deductions such as PAYE, medical aid and pension contributions etc but exclude travel allowances, bonuses and...

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Collective Property Buying – Smart Strategies For Shared Ownership

Investing in property is considered one of the savviest financial moves you can make, offering stability and potential long-term growth. However, for individuals unable to afford property alone, purchasing with a partner, friend, family member or in a group can provide a viable pathway into the property market or kick-start an investment journey.   While this collaborative approach has its advantages, it also comes with its own set of challenges and considerations that must be carefully considered upfront to protect all parties involved.   Understanding the dynamics Entering into a property purchase agreement with another party requires a thorough understanding of the implications involved...

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The Consumer’s Guide to Debt Prescription

Ever received a demand for an old debt you’d forgotten about completely? You're not alone. In South Africa, the law provides relief through a concept called prescription of debt. At Hammond Pole Attorneys, we believe in empowering consumers with knowledge about their rights and responsibilities regarding prescribed debt.   What is the prescription of debt all about? Prescription refers to a legal concept in South Africa where a creditor's right to claim unpaid debt expires after a specific period. This means that after enough time has passed, you are no longer legally obliged to settle the debt.   How long does prescribed debt stay on...

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Securing Your Family’s Future After Your Death

Ensuring that your affairs are in order after your death is important, but it is even more critical that you organise your estate before you pass if you are the parents of minor children under the age of 18. While no one wants to think of leaving behind a young family, the consequences for them in the event of your untimely death without proper provision having been made for their future, can be traumatic. It is therefore imperative that you have a correctly drawn- up last will and testament to cover all necessary arrangements. For parents of minors Children under the age of...

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Spotting Employment Contract Red Flags: A Guide for Employees and Employers

Often in our enthusiasm to secure a new job, we choose to ignore or overlook potential red flag issues around the terms and conditions of the employment offer. But mutual trust between employer and employee is essential for a harmonious working environment and there is often no going back after getting off to a bad start.     For both employer and employee, a good start includes the signing of a contract whose terms and conditions have been agreed to by both parties. Although the Basic Conditions of Employment Act (BCEA) does stipulate that written particulars of employment should be provided to the...

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The Road to Property Development in South Africa

Property development in South Africa can be a lucrative and profitable business for the aspiring and able entrepreneur. However, given our rigid legislation, municipal by laws and compliance framework, property development can also be a costly and longwinded exercise if not planned appropriately.   THE LAND A suitable piece of land must first be identified and acquired before embarking on a proclamation. This is an essential pre-development requirement, which is a process of obtaining council consent and publicly declaring the developer's intention to commence with the project. At the commencement of the project, a developer would need to assemble a team of professionals including a...

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Common Law Marriage Myths and the Power of Cohabitation Agreements

According to latest data from StatsSA, fewer South Africans are getting married as the number of civil marriages continues to decrease. For many, the concept of a ‘common law marriage’ has become deeply ingrained in beliefs about long-term partnerships with the assumption that cohabiting couples share the same legal rights and responsibilities as those who are legally married, just by virtue of living together for a certain number of years. However, this belief has no grounding in South African law. This misunderstanding can have profound consequences, particularly concerning inheritance, property ownership, and financial support.   The myth vs reality in South African...

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What you need to know about before buying your dream holiday home

The allure of owning a holiday home, a sanctuary away from the hustle and bustle of daily life, is undeniable. With the increasing flexibility of remote working and an emphasis on work-life balance, the dream of having a retreat in your favourite holiday town is more achievable than ever. At Hammond Pole Attorneys, we rounded up some crucial tips to guide you through the process.   Evaluating Your Budget Investing in a holiday home is a significant financial decision. It's crucial to assess the property market trends and interest rate fluctuations. Researching the area of interest is key – understanding the...

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Tips for buying a property in Cape Town

There is no denying the beauty of the Cape and you can hardly go wrong with picking an area to call home!  However, moving to Cape Town (or the surrounding towns and cities) is not without its challenges.   Each area or suburb in Cape Town can have a very different feeling and energy.  From the city hustle and bustle of Greenpoint and Sea Point, to family living in the Southern Suburbs or the quieter Durbanville, it may take some time to find the right fit for you.   If you're planning to move to Cape Town, you should consider renting a property before...

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Securing Your Legacy: A Comprehensive Guide to Last Wills & Testaments

In honour of September being Wills Month, we are dedicated to equipping you with essential knowledge about the importance of estate planning. A Last Will and Testament stands as a foundational document, shaping the way your legacy is preserved and assets are distributed. In this article, we delve into the intricacies of Last Wills and Testaments, providing you with a comprehensive Q&A guide to demystify this crucial aspect of safeguarding your future.   What is a Last Will and Testament?   A Last Will and Testament is a formal written document in which an individual outlines their instructions regarding the distribution of their assets...

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