As a general rule, South Africa follows English law in both criminal and civil procedure, company law, constitutional law and the law of evidence; while Roman-Dutch common law is followed in the South African contract law, law of delict (tort), law of persons, law of things, family law, etc.
What legal system does South Africa use?
South Africa has a mixed legal system – a hybrid of Roman Dutch civilian law, English common law, customary law and religious personal law. The Roman Dutch civilian law and English common law influence reflects South Africa’s history of successive colonial governance by the Dutch and English.
What are the 5 sources of South African law?
As South African Law has many sources ie. Common law, legislation or statutes, judicial precedent (court decisions), indigenous law, custom and legal academic writings, it is of practical importance for lawyers to be aware of these different sources which provide the key to the content of the law.
What is the most important source of law in South Africa?
The Constitution of 1996 is the most important source of law in South Africa. The Constitution is the supreme law of South Africa and law, passed by Parliament, which offends the Constitution, is invalid. Secondly, custom is also recognised as a primary source of law.
Is South African legal system different now?
Today, South Africa retains a plural legal system, with customary law remaining a legal system for those who wish to be subject to it. The rules of customary law may not, however, conflict with the South African Constitution.
What is private law in South Africa?
Private Law is the law that deals with relationships between individuals and includes, amongst many other areas of law, African Customary Law; Law of Delict, Law of Contract and Law of Property; as well as Law of Persons and Family.
Who makes the law in South Africa?
Parliament is the national legislature (law-making body) of South Africa. As such, one of its major functions is to pass new laws, to amend existing laws, and to repeal or abolish (cancel) old laws.
What are the two main sources of law in South Africa?
South African law has more than one source: Legislation. Case Law (court decisions) Common Law.
Why does South Africa not have a codification of law?
South African law is not codified, which means it is not recorded into one comprehensive piece of legislation. Our law has been influenced by Roman; Roman-Dutch; and English law given the history of our country. … This history brings us to the main sources of the law today in South Africa.
Does common law exist in South Africa?
There is no common law marriage in South Africa and the duration that couples spend living together does not mean that a marriage came into existence.
What is the highest law in South Africa?
The Constitution is the supreme law
South Africa is a constitutional democracy. This means the Constitution is the highest law of the land. Parliament cannot pass a law which goes against the Constitution.
What is indigenous law in South Africa?
In applying indigenous law, it is important to bear in mind that, unlike common law, indigenous law is not written. It is a system of law that was known to the community, practised and passed on from generation to generation. It is a system of law that has its own values and norms.
What is Roman law in South Africa?
Modern South African law is a mixture of Roman-Dutch and English law. Constitutional law and administrative law have developed along English lines. … In the law of succession, the rules governing the making of wills are English, whereas the substantive law of testamentary and intestate succession is largely Roman-Dutch.
Is South African law codified?
The South African law is not codified. … Common law is developed by the courts in a way that promotes the spirit of the Constitution.
What are the 5 main sources of law?
The primary sources of law in the United States are the United States Constitution, state constitutions, federal and state statutes, common law, case law, and administrative law.
What is the difference between criminal law and civil law in South Africa?
Criminal law cases are only conducted through the criminal court system. In contrast, civil laws deal with the private rights of individuals. Civil laws are applied when an individual has had his or her rights violated or when individuals have disputes with other individuals or organizations.