Answer to a question from a reader

My younger brother wants to put me out of my late father’s RDP house. How can we resolve this?

The short answer

It depends on who inherited the house.

The whole question

My father passed away while he had an RDP house. He had four children with my mother, plus one child with another wife. I stay in my father's RDP house. Then I got into a big fight with my little brother (the one who is not my mother's child). His side of the family has influenced him to chase me out of the RDP. How can we resolve this problem?

The long answer

In the first place, no one can be evicted without an eviction order from the court at any time. In this time of the coronavirus under Level 3, even if there is a court order, no one can be evicted until Level 2.

If your father died without leaving a will saying who should inherit the house, the estate (it is called the estate as it could be a house, car, money and debts) is inherited by his wife/s and his children. This is according to a law called the Intestate Succession Act which says who is first in line to inherit if the person who passed away did not leave a will.

  • If both his wives are still alive, but there were no children, each wife would inherit half the estate.

  • If the wives are still alive and there are also children, the wives will each inherit a child’s share and the children would share whatever is left. A child’s share is worked out by dividing the value of the estate by the number of surviving children, provided that the wives should not inherit less than R250 000. But if the estate is not big enough for each wife to inherit R250 000, they would inherit the estate in equal shares and the children would not get anything.

So, perhaps it would be good to have a family meeting, if that is possible, to discuss the situation, and point out that you have extended the house at your own cost.

You could also ask Legal Aid for advice. 

Legal Aid Advice Line (Toll-free): 0800 110 110

Legal Aid Ethics Hotline: 0800 153 728

Please-Call-Me number: 079 835 7179

Answered on July 15, 2020, 3:06 p.m.

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Please note. We are not lawyers or financial advisors. We do our best to make the answers accurate, but we cannot accept any legal liability if there are errors.