07 Jun

Child Care And Custody For The Disabled

It’s unfortunate, but it happens; children are sometimes born with debilitating disabilities or chronic ailments. At other times, they may suffer terrible accidents or illness and also suffer disability. In either event children with disabilities require care, sometimes more so than healthy children. During cases of child custody, measures have to be taken to ensure the welfare of disabled children.

Disabled Child Care 

According to the Children’s Act 35 of 2005, “a child with a disability or chronic illness has the right not to be subjected to medical, social, cultural and religious practices that are detrimental to his or her health, well-being, and dignity”.

This means that as a parent or carer of a disabled child, every measure must be taken to accommodate the child to ensure their continued well-being. Furthermore, efforts to include the disabled and chronically ill child in social, religious, cultural and educational activities is also expected. Additionally, any other support needed to promote their own self-reliance is a prerequisite.

Child Care and Custody Disputes

As you may expect, custody and care disputes with regards to disabled and chronically ill children can be a little more difficult than cases involving children in finer fettle. This is because the needs of the disabled child usually mean that more is expected of the carer, and maintenance paid by one parent will usually be costlier than usual.

Courts, as well as legal professionals, will ensure that all decisions are made in the best interests of the child and that the parent in whose care the child is placed is best suited to taking charge of the child’s needs. Disabled children will often require homes with more space, as well as fixtures and features that accommodate their disabilities. Often the parent with the most time available to care for the disabled child will be the preferred carer. In these instances, cooperation between separated parents is usually emphasised to ensure a stable upbringing for the child.

If you require more information regarding child care and child custody for disabled or chronically ill children, then make sure you contact Ivan Zartz Attorneys today. Ivan Zartz Attorneys specialises in all cases of child custody and is well-known throughout South Africa as a specialised practice in the legal field of child custody.

04 May

How Many Children Should You Have?

Many parents and families in the middle and upper-income groups in South Africa usually employ some sort of family planning measures when considering child rearing and securing their own futures. Parents will often plan to have one, a couple, or even three or four children. How these children are brought up depends entirely on the resources available to the parents, but how many children should you have before signs of neglect become an issue?

Obviously the idea of “too many children” is incredibly dependent on a number of important factors. These include the financial security of the parents (or single parent), time restrictions, and the condition of the parents’ relationship with each other.

Finances play a large role in the upbringing of the child. If parents are expecting a high standard of living for their family, then they have to take into consideration the costs involved in having children, as well as being able to send the children to good schools, pay medical bills, pay for extra murals, and ultimately provide food and shelter. If parents do not have the financial resources, then they can expect to lower their standards of living, causing increasing financial burden with every child born. Unfortunately, some parents choose to neglect their children in an effort to maintain their high standards of living by either not providing for them, or stopping them from performing extra murals. In cases of financial restraint, couples should refrain from having children if it will mean the detriment to the child’s wellbeing.

The same could be said for time constraints; couples with very little time due to work and or personal past-times cannot rationally believe they are fit to raise children. If there is one thing that’s certain, it is that children require plenty of love and attention. A lack of attention given by the parent causes child neglect. Of course, the more children a couple has the less likely they are able to give their individual children the required attention. In large families, there may be one or more children that are attention seeking. This can create a situation whereby other children are ‘sidelined’, causing serious psychological trauma. Parents should identify their time constraints, as well as time constraints in the middle to long term future, and plan their families accordingly.

How many children should you have? By all means, if you can afford the time, money and dedication required when caring for many children, then there is no reason why you cannot have an exceedingly large family. But if you are unable to provide for your children, then you should not plan to have as many children as you may want.

If you require a child custody attorney, or you need the services of an attorney who has many years of experience dealing with family law, then contact Ivan Zartz Attorneys today!




25 Apr

Holiday Tips For Separated Parents

It’s easy for parents to get side-tracked and plan vacations and holidays without their children so as to not alienate the other parent. Other times parents plan exotic and flamboyant holidays just so they can ‘get one over’ on the other parent. In both cases, the children are not considered, and parents should make more of an effort to show their children love and attention. Here are a few holiday tips for separated parents that help ensure that the children enjoy themselves and that the other parent accepts the vacation.

  1. Make sure that you plan ahead with regards to vacation ideas. Most separated parents will have a schedule in place that sets out times and periods in which parents are allowed to take their children on holiday. Follow up on dates with the other parent, and discuss the vacation in more detail a few months before the holiday.
  2. Make sure that all the vacation plans and necessary information are provided to the other parent. The other parent has a right to know where their child is staying, who else will be in contact with the child, and where their child is going. Little or no details can be used against you if a matter is brought to court regarding the care and custody of the children.
  3. Make sure that you understand the legal and regulatory requirements when travelling abroad with children. Consider the written consent required from both parents, as well as the limiting yet protecting Hague Convention and international child abduction laws. Countries bound by the Hague Convention will require the written consent of both parents. This is one of the most important holiday tips for separated parents.
  4. Make sure that the children are aware of the nature of the vacation. They must understand that both parents are supportive of the vacation and that the parent who is not attending the vacation will not be saddened by the fact that the children are going on holiday with the other parent. If this is not communicated the children may feel guilty by going on holiday.
  5. Make sure that the children are properly looked after, and all their needs are considered. Medication, health insurance and constant observance on the part of the travelling parent are important for their own legal protection and the wellbeing of their children. Both parents must understand that vacations should not be used as a competitive tool, neither should they be used to alienate the other parent.

The following holiday tips for separated parents will ensure that both parties agree on the holiday and that the children are most likely to enjoy their vacation.

For more information and tips regarding child custody make sure to keep visiting the Ivan Zartz articles page.

If you require a child custody attorney, make sure you contact Ivan Zartz Attorneys today.

20 Jan

Rates & Taxes: Collect Debt or Pull Plug?

There are two parties that can essentially ‘pull the plug’ on a tenant or property owner’s electricity. But whether they should disconnect the tenant or owner’s electricity or commence debt collection alone is still a contentious issue.

Should the property owner cut off a home’s electricity if the tenant has not paid rates and taxes? If the owner turns off a home’s electricity it is considered to be taking the law into one’s own hands, and this is illegal. The owner would have to get a court order in order to turn off the electricity for each and every default. This is why it is an easier option to install a pay-as-you-go electricity meter that will automatically turn off the power when the meter limit has been reached. In case of defaults on payments, it is crucial that the property owner acquire the services of a debt collection attorney like Ivan Zartz Attorneys who can follow up on the default in payments by the tenants.

Contact Ivan Zartz Attorneys here. 

Is the municipality within its rights to turn off a home’s electricity if rates and taxes have not been paid? Yes. This includes rates and taxes in arrears even if the current account is up to date. It is completely within their rights. The municipality also consolidates accounts and partial payments of a total amount in arrears will not necessarily necessitate the re-connection of power.

However, they cannot turn off a home’s water. South African’s have a right to 6000 litres of water a month, and it is thereful unlawful to turn off one’s water in the event of defaults on payments. They may turn off the electricity mains if the water account is in arrears over a series of months.

If you require a debt collection attorney, get hold of Ivan Zartz Attorneys today, or find out more about our debt collection practice by clicking here.

16 Nov

What is a Credit Check?

Modern credit providers have to take measures that protect both themselves as well as the consumer. Without such measures consumers (debtors) are often mistreated, and/or the creditor does not receive monies due.

Although it is often considered an invasive practice, credit checks are way of ensuring that debtors are able to honour a debt agreement that they have entered into with a creditor. By denying credit to a consumer who is otherwise unable to fulfill the requirements on his/her credit check, they are actually protected from entering an agreement that they will most likely not be able to honour.

How does a credit check perform this important function?

A credit check will forfeit important public credit report information such as credit history. This identify’s how much money a consumer owes to other creditors and their ability to repay. It is also noted as to when payments were made. Consistent late payment is particularly frowned upon and may disqualify consumers from certain credit. Ultimately it is the creditor’s discretion whether or not this information is provided to credit providers, but it is required by most creditors before entering a credit agreement.

Court judgement information is also a part of a creditors’ credit check, as this will give them information involving the litigation of any cases involving non-repayment or bankruptcy. All this information is public and creditors have access to it. Other public information is that of residential as well as work addresses.

Speaking of work, any associates that you are currently involved with may also be inquired upon in a credit check. Associates often impact the ability of consumers to repay a debt, as in the case of a shared mortgage, and their credit history will be analysed.

A credit check importantly prevents those who do not have the financial stability from entering into a credit agreement that could otherwise do more harm. It is the creditors’ responsibility to implement the correct credit checks to ensure that the entire credit procedure develops as planned. If you are a creditor who requires a debt collection attorney because of an organisation or individual who has not fulfilled the credit agreement, then contact Ivan Zartz Attorneys today!