Evictions in South Africa
An attorney confronted with an instruction to commence eviction proceedings is faced with a daunting task. It is essential to establish at the outset what mode of eviction is relevant. Evictions in South Africa are regulated by either the common law or one of various statutes, depending on the type of land and occupier involved.
A common law eviction relates to all evictions from land other than land utilised for residential purposes. Common law principles and procedures apply. In the Magistrate’s Court the procedure is by way of action and these evictions relate mainly to commercial tenancy issues. If residential property is involved, various statutes may apply. The Pie Act (Prevention of Illegal Eviction from and Unlawful Occupation of Land Act, 19 of 1998) deals with urban residential evictions and requires a specified procedure. Esta (The Extension of Security of Tenure Act, 62 of 1997) provides for evictions from land situated outside proclaimed townships and prescribes intricate procedures in respect of various different categories of occupiers. Only the Magistrate’s Court and Land Claims Court have jurisdiction in Esta applications. The LTA (Labour Tenants Act 3 of 1996) provides for evictions of labour tenants from farm land. This Act likewise contains complex provisions. The Land Claims Court has exclusive jurisdiction.
The various modes of evictions will be discussed and explained in detail at seminars to be held countrywide during November 2013. Click on seminars above for further details.