Succession Law: Wills Act 7 of 1953; Intestate Succession Act 81 of 19

Succession Law: Wills Act 7 of 1953; Intestate Succession Act 81 of 1987; Estate Duty Act 45 of 1955 & Regulations; Administration of Estates Act 66 of 1965 & Regulations; Administration of Estates Laws Interim Rationalisation Act 20 of 2001; Maintenance of Surviving Spouses Act 27 of 1990; Reform of Customary Law of Succession and Regulation of Related Matters Act 11 of 2009; Trust Property Control Act 57 of 1988 & Regulations


Further Legislative Developments

  • Wills Act 7 of 1953: In Moosa NO and Others v Minister of Justice and Others 2018 (5) SA 13 (CC) s. 2C (1) was found to be inconsistent with the Constitution and invalid. To remedy the defect, s. 2C (1) is to be read as including the following underlined words:

    'If any descendants of a testator, excluding a minor or a mentally ill descendant, who, together with the surviving spouse of the testator, is entitled to a benefit in terms of a will renounces his right to receive such benefit, such benefit shall vest in the surviving spouse. For the purposes of this sub-section, a 'surviving spouse' includes every husband and wife of a monogamous and polygamous Muslim marriage solemnised under the religion of Islam.'

    The declaration of invalidity operates retrospectively with effect from 27 April 1994 except that it does not invalidate any transfer of ownership that was finalised prior to the date of this order of any property pursuant to the application of s. 2C (1) of the Wills Act 7 of 1953 unless it is established that, when the transfer was effected, the transferee was on notice that the property in question was subject to a legal challenge on the grounds upon which the applicant brought the present application.

  • Estate Duty Act 45 of 1955: Amended by the Rates and Monetary Amounts and Amendment of Revenue Laws Act 21 of 2018 with effect from 1 March 2018 (GG 42171 of 17 January 2019) and by the Taxation Laws Amendment Act 34 of 2019, with effect from 30 October 2019 (GG 42951 of 15 January 2020)


Proposed Future Developments

Draft Judicial Matters Amendment Bill, 2018