Chris Fick & Associates

In the land of the will, clarity is king

“The golden rule for the interpretation of testaments is to ascertain the wishes of the testator from the language used. And when these wishes are ascertained, the court is bound to give effect to them, unless we are prevented by some rule or law from doing so.” (Quoted in the judgment below) When drawing up […]

Why buyers should ask for building plans (and why sellers should supply them)

If, after a property buyer has taken transfer, it turns out that a structure on the property is unlawful for lack of local authority planning permission and approved plans, who must fix the problem? Does the buyer have any claim against the seller? We address those questions in the context of the general rule that […]

A Valentine’s Day thought for life partners: What is a “Universal Partnership”

Valentine’s Day is upon us, and it’s a great opportunity for couples in a life partnership to review their legal and financial relationships. Not having in place proper legal documentation to define those relationships puts both partners, and their families, at risk of dispute, heartache and financial distress. We discuss both the risks and the […]

You can (and should) both discipline and prosecute thieving employees

Our criminal courts report a new surge in a particular type of workplace monetary crime – serious thefts and frauds by those in the most trusted financial positions such as accountants and bookkeepers. Some of the amounts involved are mind-boggling. If you fall victim to such crime, what should you do? Lay charges? Institute disciplinary […]

Coffee with Us: Masi Ngcwatywa

Please meet Masi, who works with Chris when we are mandated to market and sell properties on behalf of our clients. Masi Ngcwatywa joined us in October 2022 as a candidate property practitioner. He was born in Lady Frere and raised in Cape Town. He completed all his studies in Cape Town, where he also […]

How to execute a will during physical and social distancing

The Wills Act No 7 of 1953 prescribes how a Will has to be signed by a testator and 2 witnesses for it to be accepted by the Master of the High Court as a valid Will. After the death of a testator, his Will has to be lodged at the Master as part of […]


There are many advantages to living in a security estate, provided that the HOAs (Home Owners Associations) which normally run them are financially sound. Since HOAs rely on the collection of levies from members to fund communal expenses, they should always be protected in this regard by title deed conditions obliging all owners: To become […]


Your risk of personal liability for any “loss, damages or costs”, sustained through your actions (or omissions) by any company of which you are a director, has risen sharply since the new Companies Act came into force in 2011. Your potential liability is in effect enforceable not only by your fellow directors but also by […]