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News & Resources

Registrar of Deeds Ordered to Pay for Stolen Property
23 May 2018  | Gerda Janse van Rensburg
In a recent court case a client sued the Registrar of Deeds for damages, as her property was wrongfully transfered from her name.

The facts of the case sounds like something out of a cloak and dagger novel, but simply entails that the applicant’s immovable property had been sold and transferred, without her knowledge, to the third respondent, who shortly thereafter sold it on to the first respondent.

It was not disputed that the first transaction was fraudulent and that both transfers fell to be set aside.

The courts found the Registrar of deeds were negligent in allowing such a fraudulent transaction and was ordered to pay damages to the client.   This based on the deeds office’s negligence in allowing registration of the first transfer when the deeds ought to have been rejected.

Ownership of immovable property is only obtained on registration of the property,into the buyer's name, in the Deeds Office of the province where the property is situated.

Conveyancing is the legal process that takes place when lawful ownership is obtained of immovable property.

Each time a property is sold; a new deed of transfer must be drawn and registered in such Deeds office

Only  Conveyancers is allowed to handle this conveyancing process on behalf of clients. A Conveyancer is an attorney with the extra qualification who specialises in the conveyancing process

Make sure that your transaction is in qualified hands and ask your attorney whether he is a conveyancer before giving your property instruction to him.

Court case:

 Stirling v Fairgrove (Pty) Ltd and Others 2018 (2) SA 469 (GJ).
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