n Tydskrif vir die Suid-Afrikaanse Reg - Die -reël en die

Volume 2009, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 0257-7747



Een van die geldigheidsvereistes vir 'n kontrak is geoorloofdheid. Skrywers in Suid-Afrika is dit nie met mekaar eens oor die indelings wat gevolg moet word om ongeoorloofdheid te beskryf nie. Wat die Suid-Afrikaanse reg betref, word gewoonlik gesê dat 'n kontrak ongeldig is indien dit in stryd is met 'n wetteregtelike verbod of die gemenereg. Sekere skrywers ondersteun 'n verdere verfyning en verstaan onder gemeenregtelik ongeoorloofde kontrakte daardie afsprake tussen partye wat teen die openbare belang of die goeie sedes is. Indien 'n mens dit nou heel volledig wil stel sodat alle kontrakte wat regtens verbode is in een mandjie gesit word, sou dit nie verkeerd wees om te sê dat 'n kontrak ongeoorloof is indien dit óf deur 'n bepaalde reël van die gemenereg verbied word, ëf deur een of ander wet taboe verklaar is, ëf teen die goeie sedes () is, ëf teen die openbare beleid indruis.

This article deals with the impact of the National Credit Act 34 of 2005 on the application of the rule in the case of unlawful credit agreements and unlawful provisions in credit agreements. In order to provide the necessary background a review was undertaken of the application of the rule and its influence on enrichment actions in Belgian, English and South African law. The point of departure in Belgian law is that performance rendered in terms of a void contract, even an unlawful contract, should be returned to the party who performed. A court has a discretion, however, to refuse to make an order for return of the performance if public policy so requires. In English law the rule is, on the face of things, strictly applied but numerous exceptions were made over the years. Writers on English law have pleaded for a more principled approach that would give courts a wider discretion. In South African law the rule is alive and well but exceptions have been made to do simple justice between man and man. The courts are, rightly, of the opinion that it is impossible to work with hard and fast rules. Circumstances differ from case to case and a court has to determine in each case what the dictates of public policy are. The National Credit Act introduced certain harsh rules that may, and will, lead to inequitable results. Certain shortcomings in the act and interpretation problems occasioned by inelegant or downright untidy drafting are pointed out and submissions are made for amendments to sections 89 and 90 of the act.

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