Prescribed Debt in South Africa – Collecting a Debt Years Later | Legal Articles


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Prescribed Debt in South Africa – Collecting a Debt Years Later

Debt collectors must follow a certain procedure when collecting debt to ensure the entire process remains both ethical and legal.

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Prescribed Debt South Africa 2020

What is Prescribed Debt?

To accumulate interest on credit, exploitative credit providers deliberately avoid collecting debt from their debtors. This unethical practice has been a major contributor to debt crisis that South Africa finds itself in.

Prescription of debt was therefore introduced to protect South African consumers from abusive creditors.

Prescribed debt is debt that is no longer valid as it has not been recognised or pursued by the creditor, nor acknowledged or paid by the debtor for more than 36 months.

*Please note there are exceptions depending on the type of debt in question.

Additionally, prescribed debt was introduced to ensure that creditors and debt collectors remained ethical when collecting debt forcing them to collect debt within a reasonable timeframe.

Collecting debt even when it has been prescribed

Below are debts that can be pursued for a period of 3 years after the fact:

  • Credit cards
  • Personal loans
  • Retail accounts
  • Vehicle loans

The following debts can be pursued for a period of 30 years after the fact:

  • Home bond loans
  • Debts ordered by court hearing
  • Money owed to SARS
  • Money owed to the municipality such as TV licenses and utilities accounts

Legal Debt Collection

To remain legal and ethical throughout the debt collection process, debt collectors and debt collection attorneys are governed by the Debt Collectors Act.

Van Deventer & Van Deventer Incorporated – Debt Collection Attorneys in Johannesburg and Cape Town

When trying to pursue prescribed debt or debt in general it is always best to ask for legal advice.

Van Deventer & Van Deventer Incorporated are attorneys specialising in property law, civil litigation, and debt collection. Contact us for professional and efficient civil litigation and debt collection.

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