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WCLawyer, Attorney
Category: South Africa Law
Satisfied Customers: 15597
Experience:  L.LB (UOVS)
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I am a property owner in a body corporate complex. Administration

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I am a property owner in a body corporate complex. Administration of the complex is performed by Angor Property Specialist. Last month I was late by some 25 odd DAYS in paying my levies. In my latest levy statement they have charged me for Arrears letter and Final Demand letter Fees (R17.10 +R19.38). Furthermore they charged me a 10% collection commission of R267.49. This brings to a total of R303.97 in penalty fees for a late levy payment by 25 DAYS. I would like to know if there are any legal guidelines to what is permissible in-terms of what penalties can be charged and from when they can be imposed? Furthermore if such penalties are imposed, would this be recorded in a Body Corporate meeting, etc. If no such record exists what would be my recourse? I have payed the penalty fees in the meantime. Thank you!
Good day.

Did they send the letters?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes, by email. Payment was due by the 1st of June. Arrears letter was e-mailed on the 11th of June, and Final Demand was sent on the 18th of June. Payment of the levies (including July) was made on 27th of June.

The Sectional Titles Act state that if the BC is to instigate legal action for arrear levies, they are entitled to their attorney and client costs. The amounts that you mention here seems to be legal fees that they are entitled to claim back in terms of the Magistrates Court Act, read with the Sectional Titles Act. It is not penalty fees, as such.

I am afraid that you would be liable for that. This would have been the case even if the arrear period was shorter than 25 days.

I know that this is not the answer that you may have hoped for, however, this is the way in which the law operates and I am of opinion that it does not assist any one of us if I give you an answer that you want to hear, that is inaccurate. If you have follow up questions in clarification, feel free to ask them at no extra cost. If you are satisfied with the answer, kindly click on one of the five faces on the ratings page. I don't get anything for this answer unless you do.

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