Termination of Supply and Execution Against Immovable Property For a Prior Owners Debt

27 Jul, 2016

In the case of Stand 278 Strydom Park (Pty) Ltd v Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality (unreported case no 23503/2014), the court had to consider whether a municipality is entitled to terminate the supply of municipal services to a property due to unpaid historical debt attached to that property, which was incurred by the prior owners of the property and secondly, whether a municipality could attach a purchaser’s property as a result of these unpaid historical debts.

The court expressed its view that a municipality is not entitled to disconnect municipal services due to a prior owners unpaid debts. This creates compelling and persuasive authority for future litigants facing the same legal issue. The court held that a municipality will only be able to attach and sell a property of a purchaser for the historical debt of prior owners where it has first obtained judgement against the prior owners or owners concerned.