The Master of the High Court of South Africa

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The Master of the High Court is a branch of the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development. It serves the public in respect of:

  • deceased estates,
  • liquidations (insolvent estates),
  • registration of trusts,
  • tutors and curators, and
  • administration of the Guardian's Fund (on behalf of minors and mentally challenged persons).

The Master has wide interaction with members of the public and practitioners and its dealings have an impact on the economy. The Master's Office has five main divisions. They all strive to protect the financial interests of persons whose assets or interests are, for various reasons, being managed by others.

A Master of the High Court is appointed for every provincial division of the High Court of South Africa. Masters' Offices are situated in Bloemfontein, Cape Town, Grahamstown, Kimberley, Mmabatho/Mafikeng, Pietermaritzburg, Pretoria, Umtata, Bisho, Thohoyandou, Johannesburg, Polokwane, Durban and Port Elizabeth.

Contents

[edit] What Regulates the Court?

Various Acts regulate the duties and powers of the Master.

The most important of these are the Administration of Estates Act, the Insolvency Act, the Companies Act, the Close Corporations Act and the Trust Property Control Act.

The Rationalisation of the Administration of Estates Act, 1965, which includes the functioning of the Guardian's Fund and the appointment of the Master, has not been yet completed. In terms of the present Act the Master's Offices execute inter alia the following functions:

  • The administration of estates of deceased and insolvent persons in accordance with the applicable statutory prescriptions.
  • The protection of the interests of minors and legally incapacitated persons.
  • The protection and administration of the funds of minors, contractually incapacitated and undetermined and absent heirs, which have been paid into the Guardian's Fund.
  • The supervision of the administration of companies and close corporations in accordance with the relevant statutory prescriptions.
  • The determination and assessment of estate duties in terms of the State Duty Act, by virtue of a delegation by the South African Revenue Services.
  • The supervision of trusts in terms of the Trust Property Control Act, 1988.
  • The safeguarding of all documentary material received by the Master in respect of estates, insolvencies, liquidations, trusts, etc.
  • The processing of enquiries by executors, attorneys, beneficiaries and other interested parties.
  • The appointment of impartial and capable persons as executors, trustees, curators and liquidators.

[edit] Vision

"A dynamic, business-like, commercially-viable Masters Division dedicated to the pursuit of service excellence"

[edit] Mission

"To provide efficient, cost effective and specialised services of supervision, custodianship, arbitration and information regarding Deceased and Insolvent Estates and Trusts. To serve Estate practitioners, beneficiaries of Estates and Trusts, minors and mentally challenged persons in South Africa for the purpose of safeguarding those beneficiaries' financial and proprietary rights."

[edit] Core Values

  • Transparency
  • Accountability
  • Fairness
  • Speed
  • Excellent customer service
  • Cooperation
  • Justice for all

[edit] Contact Details

Website: http://www.doj.gov.za/master/m_main.htm

Email: chiefmaster@justice.gov.za


[edit] National Office

Chief Master: Ms Koekie Mbeki (Acting) Tel: 012-315 1699

Fax: 012 - 315 1603

Postal Address: Private Bag X81, Pretoria, 0001

Physical Address: 3rd Floor, South Tower, Momentum Centre, 329 Pretorius Street, (Cnr of Pretorius and Prinsloo Streets), Pretoria


Chief Directors: Mr L Basson / Ms K Mbeki

Tel: 012-315 1824/1699

Fax: 012-315 1886 Postal Address: Private Bag X81, Pretoria, 0001

Physical Address: 3rd Floor, South Tower, Momentum Centre, 329 Pretorius Street, (Cnr of Pretorius and Prinsloo Streets), Pretoria


Customer Care: Ms Patrys Venter (Assistant Master)

Tel: 012 - 315 1207

Fax: 086 514 1174

Email: Chiefmaster@justice.gov.za

Postal Address: Private Bag X81, Pretoria , 0001

Physical Address: 3rd Floor, South Tower, Momentum Centre, 329 Pretorius Street, (Cnr of Pretorius and Prinsloo Streets), Pretoria


[edit] Bloemfontein

Master: Mr Jan du Plessis

Tel: 051-411 5500 Fax: 051-448 6182, 051-447 6575, 051-448 8507 (Insolvency)

Postal Address: Private Bag X20584, Bloemfontein, 9300

Physical Address: Southern Life Building, C/o Aliwal & Maitland Streets, Bloemfontein, 9301

Office Hours for the Public: 07h45 until 13h00

Notes: No visits or telephone enquiries will be handled after 13h00. Members of the public from other towns must please make arrangements prior to their visit with the Masters Office, should they need to be assisted in the afternoon.

[edit] Kimberley

Master: Mr Craig Davids

Tel: 053-831 1942

Fax: 053-833 1586 (General), 053-832 9559 (Guardian's Fund)

Postal Address: Private Bag X5015, Kimberley, 8300

Physical Address: Civic Centre, Jan Smuts Boulevard, Kimberley, 8300

Office Hours for the Public: 07h45-13h00 and 13h45-16h00


[edit] Mmabatho

Master: Mr P Modibela

Tel: 018-381 8585

Fax: 018-381 3617

Postal Address: Private Bag X42, Mmabatho, 2735

Physical Address: Justice Chambers, 44 Shippard Street, Mafikeng, 2745

Office Hours for the Public: 07h45-13h00 and 14h00-16h15


[edit] Pretoria

Master: Mrs Nokoliso Sigcau

Tel: 012-339 7700

Fax: 012-326 1977

Postal Address: Private Bag X60, Pretoria, 0001

Physical Address: Sanlam Forum Building, C/o Church and Queen Streets, Pretoria, 0002

Office Hours for the Public: 10h00-13h00


[edit] Johannesburg

Master (Acting): Mr L Basson

Tel: 011-429 8000

Fax: 011-833 1362/086 507 3986

Postal Address: Private Bag X 5, Johannesburg, 2000

Physical Address: No 66 Marshall Street, Hollard Building, JHB


[edit] Thohoyandou

Master: Mr TC Rambauli

Tel: 015-962 1032

Fax: 015-962 1033

Postal Address: Private Bag X5015, Thohoyandou, Venda, 0950

Physical Address: Venda Government Building Complex, Thohoyandou, Venda, 0950

Office Hours for the Public: 07h45-13h00 and 13h00-16h00


[edit] Polokwane

Master: Ms FP Mugivhi

Tel: 015-291 4300

Fax: 015-291 4320

Postal Address: Private Bag X9670, Polokwane, 0700

Physical Address: Cnr Grobler and Hans van Rensburg, Office 105, Library Garden, 1st floor, Polokwane


[edit] Bisho

Master: Ms Z Nhlapo (Matikinca)

Tel: 040-608 6601

Fax: 040-639 2100

Postal Address: Private Bag X7490, King Williamstown, 5600

Physical Address: No 1 Prince Alfred Square, Old Embassy Building, King Williams Town

Office Hours for the Public: 08h00-13h00 and 14h00-16h30

[edit] Cape Town

Master (Acting): Ms Irma Dick

Tel: 021-410 8300/02

Fax: 021-465 2574

Postal Address: Private Bag X9018, Cape Town, 8000

Physical Address: High Court, Parade Street, Cape Town, 8001

Office Hours for the Public: 08h00-12h00

Notes: Information available from 1951; all information before that can be found at the Archive, Old Roeland Prison, tel: (021) 462 4050


[edit] Grahamstown

Master: Mr SS Moodley

Tel: 046-603 4000/4633

Fax: 046-622 9990

Postal Address: Private Bag X1010, Grahamstown, 6140

Physical Address: 5 Bathurst Street, Grahamstown, 6139

Office Hours for the Public: 07h45-12h45


[edit] Pietermaritzburg

Master: Mr MF Vahed

Tel: General: 033-342 0591/264 7000; Guardian's Fund: 033-342 0672/0673/0614/0643/0656

Fax: 033-342 3129

Postal Address: Private Bag X9010, Pietermaritzburg, 3200

Physical Address: Court Gardens, C/o Commercial Road & Church Streets, Pietermaritzburg

Office Hours for the Public: 07h45-13h00


[edit] Umtata

Master: Mr SC Jozana

Tel: 047-532 3716

Fax: 047-532 2040

Postal Address: Private Bag X5023, Umtata, 5100

Physical Address: Metropolitan Place, C/o Leeds and Craister Streets, Umtata, 5100

Office Hours for the Public: 7h45-13h00 and 13h45-16h00


[edit] Durban

Master: Ms A Tsolekile Tel: 031-306 0123

Fax: 031-306 0126

Postal Address: Private Bag x 54325, Durban, 4000

Physical Address: 2nd Floor, Devonshire Place, cnr. Field and Smith Streets, Durban, 4001

Office Hours for the Public: 07h45-16h00


[edit] Port Elizabeth

Master: Ms EA Daniels

Tel: 041-403 5100

Fax: 041-403 5117

Postal Address: Private Bag X 2, Centrahill, Port Elizabeth, 6006

Physical Address: 523 Govan Mbeki Avenue (Cnr Crawford & Govan Mbeki Avenue ), North End, Port Elizabeth

Office Hours for the Public: 07h45-13h00

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