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  King Nno V De Jager 2021 4 SA I (CC): Three perspectives

du Toit, F., Harding, M., & Humm, A. (2022). King Nno V De Jager 2021 4 SA I (CC): Three perspectives. Stellenbosch Law Review, 501-528. doi:10.47348/SLR/2022/i3a8.

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du Toit, François, Author
Harding, Matthew, Author
Humm, Andreas1, Author           
Affiliations:
1MPI for Comparative and International Private Law, Max Planck Society, ou_24030              

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 Abstract: In the King case, the South African Constitutional Court adjudicated on a gender-based disinheritance under a testamentary fideicommissum. The court, in three judgments, found that the disinheritance violated public policy and was, moreover, unconstitutional and thus invalid. King was the Constitutional Court’s first pronouncement on a gender-based disinheritance in a purely private bequest. It therefore stands in contrast to earlier High Court and Supreme Court of Appeal judgments regarding the exclusion of potential beneficiaries under testamentary charitable bequests. This contribution provides three perspectives by commentators from three jurisdictions on the Constitutional Court’s judgment in King. The first perspective argues against an objection that can be raised against a judgment such as King, namely that it constitutes an unjustified judicial violation of personal autonomy, freedom of disposition and private property in the law of gifts and trusts. The first perspective posits that discriminatory goals such as those pursued through explicit gender-exclusive disinheritances are inherently worthless and the judicial invalidation of such disinheritances therefore have a negligible impact on personal autonomy, freedom of disposition and private property. The second perspective cautions against the Constitutional Court’s express rejection of the public/private divide in the law of gifts and trusts. It argues that the divide plays an important role in striking a balance between personal autonomy, freedom of disposition and private property on the one hand, and policy as well as constitutional imperatives regarding equality and non-discrimination on the other hand. The second perspective thus advocates that the public/private divide must be retained in the law of gifts and trusts. The third perspective evaluates the King case from a German viewpoint and argues that the Constitutional Court’s reasoning in this case undervalued freedom of testation. The third perspective advances a solution that strives to balance the arguments that underpin the first and second perspectives.

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 Dates: 2022-11-23
 Publication Status: Issued
 Pages: 28
 Publishing info: -
 Table of Contents: -
 Rev. Type: -
 Identifiers: DOI: 10.47348/SLR/2022/i3a8
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Title: Stellenbosch Law Review
  Other : Stellenbosse regstydskrif
Source Genre: Journal
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Pages: - Volume / Issue: - Sequence Number: - Start / End Page: 501 - 528 Identifier: ISSN: 1016-4359
CoNE: https://pure.mpg.de/cone/journals/resource/1016-4359