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Christiaan K
Christiaan K,
Category: South Africa Law
Satisfied Customers: 135
Experience:  Attorney & Director at Lombard Kotze Incorporated
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My tenant has not paid rent for 6 months. How can I go about

Customer Question

My tenant has not paid rent for 6 months. How can I go about claiming via the small claims court
JA: Because laws vary from place to place, can you tell me what state the property is in?
Customer: It is a three bedroom 2 bathroom flat in Margate fully furnished
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: The estate agent has sent e-mails, whatsapp messages and many phone calls but only received promises to pay or says he intends purchasing the property but no offer to purchase has been received. The tenant is a single man and according to the agent earns in excess of R100K per month as an engineer
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: His current arrears is R26,019.37 however I will accept the maximum allowed by the law. I am a pensioner and I rely on this rental income to subsidise pension
Submitted: 1 month ago.
Category: South Africa Law
Expert:  nyclawyer replied 1 month ago.
You can file in small claims court using a complaint. You want to prepare your case by creating a time line starting from the earliest event. For each event, write down key details and witnesses and if there is a document that relates to it, save it and refer to it. This timeline can be very valuable in narrating your case and presenting it later in a concrete and specific way. You could also have a lawyer pursue full amount working on contingency fee basis. By being prepared and pressing your claim, the other side should feel the pressure and consider the risk of losing and legal fees. That realization can help bring about a settlement! Please let me know if the reply is acceptable by responding "yes" or "acceptable"
Customer: replied 1 month ago.
I reside in Boksburg where do I go to lodge the claim? I have a signed lease from the estate agent and a current statement of account. What further assistance can you provide
Customer: replied 1 month ago.
I have already paid the R620 on my Mastercard must a pay an additional R720 just to speak to the lawyer.
Expert:  nyclawyer replied 1 month ago.
I would not pursue without counsel and surrender rent owing. martindale.com and findlaw.com are both excellent lookup directories. Both highly rated. Both used by lawyers. Easy to search and find local options. You stand to recover not only your actual losses (compensatory damages) but also interest, costs and legal fees. on occasion special damages (punitive damages) are also available. pursued where you reside or if defendant has relocated, closer to defendant. No need for a call on my end. Please let me know if the reply is acceptable by responding "yes" or "acceptable"
Customer: replied 1 month ago.
I feel that the R620 paid was a waste of time and money as I still do not know how to go about suing the tenant via small claims court. The website states that if I am not satisfied with the answer received I may request a full refund.
Expert:  Christiaan K replied 1 month ago.

Good day

My name is ***** ***** I will assist you in answering your question today so please feel free to ask as many follow-up questions as you like until you are satisfied that I have answered your question.

If you want to lodge a claim in the small claims court, your claim will be limited to a maximum of R15 000.00. You will have to institute a claim in the area where the rental property is situated. You can go to the clerck of the small claims court at the Magistrates office for that area. She will assist you to draft a letter of demand which should be either posted by registered post of delivered by the sheriff.

After the time mentioned in the letter of demand have lapsed and he still has not paid, you will go back to the clerk of the small claims court who will then assist you to draft a summons. The summons will then be served by the sheriff of the court, giving the defendant a court date at which time he is to appear at court.

On the given day, you are to appear personallyas well, taking with you all your documentary proof of your claim. The commissioner will then make a binding ruling 9court order). If the tenant then still does not pay up, the clerk of the court will assist you to issue a warrant of execution whereby the sheriff will attach property belonging to the tenant to sell in execution to recoup your money.

You can also decide to appoint an attorney to assist you with claiming the full arrears and also evicting the tenant from the premises. As attorneys fees differ quite substantially, you might want to find out before hand exactly how much it will cost you.

I trust that this answered your question.

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Kind regards

Expert:  Christiaan K replied 1 month ago.

Did you receive my answer of 11 September?