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Topic: Customary marriage  |  Show questions and answers for all topics

In the eyes of the law, are customary marriages equal to civil marriages?

Yes, they are, according to the Recognition of Customary Marriages Act of 1998.

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Can my ex-wife for whom I only paid half lobola for before separating claim from my estate even though I have made a will that excludes her?

You need to establish if you were married under customary law despite not paying full lobola. If you were, your ex could claim half your estate.

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Is there a way to prevent my previous customary law wife from trying to claim my assets one day, now that I have married again under civil law in 2023?

The fact that the lobola was not paid in full before you split up, does not necessarily mean that you were not married. And if you were married under customary law, you may not marry under civil law.

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What should I do to ensure that the lobola I paid for the mother of my child will go to the child if I lost the agreement letter?

You could draw up an affidavit that both you and the mother of your child should sign.

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Are we still married if my partner collected lobola after we separated?

The safest course is to assume that you are indeed married, and apply to Home Affairs for a marriage certificate, which you will need in order to get divorced.

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What should I do if I got married under civil law without legally divorcing my first wife that I married under customary law?

You need to legally divorce your first wife. You can then "re-marry" your current wife.

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Can I go alone to register our customary marriage 15 years after lobola was paid?

Yes, either spouse or both spouses can register the customary marriage at Home Affairs - but try to get your husband to come along.

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Who inherits the house of a man who was married to but separated from one woman and in a long-term partnership with another?

It may be that your mother and children and the separated wife and her children are both entitled to inherit.

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How can I leave a customary marriage if I lost the lobola negotiations letter and we didn't register the marriage at Home Affairs?

There are other ways that you can prove your marriage to get divorced.

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Can I get money from my husband who left me after four years married under Islamic law?

In Islam, it states clearly that the husband is responsible for providing for his wife and children financially. But you may need legal help.

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