Unlawful garnishee orders still rule the roost

The employers play a major role in that they are now empowered to scrutinise these orders and challenge them where necessary, Lala-Mohan said.

He said the most pertinent question now arising is what effect these changes might have brought, if any.

Secondly, are courts implementing these new requirements and preventing the abuses of the past? Are employers fulfilling their role in scrutinising these orders?

Thirdly, what are the effect of the change directly proportional to the execution of it by the stakeholders involved in this process? he asked

Lala-Mohan said these question raise serious and warranted concerns as recent media reports suggest that the abuse was still rife.

In the University of Stellenbosch Legal Aid v Minister of Justice and Correctional Services and others, the NCR and the SAHRC among other entities, were tasked to take necessary steps to alert consumers as to their rights in terms of this judgment, he said.

“For stakeholders to implement these changes they need to be made aware of the law and how it applies and this can only be accomplished through education and direction from the bodies empowered to act,” he said.

The SAHRC, NCR and credit ombud are committed to continue with discussions aiming to eradicate EAO abuse, he said.

If consumers are concerned about the validity of the EAO, they may approach the credit ombud.

The office resolves disputes between members and consumers relating to non-bank credit agreements and credit information disputes which include where consumers have been incorrectly listed. The office can assist consumers to investigate EAOs relating to non-bank credit agreements, free of charge.

The credit ombud would look at the credit agreement to understand whether or not the agreement and any legal action were valid and whether the legal procedures relating to the issuing of EAOs were followed.

Consumers may contact the credit ombud on 0861 662 817, SMS on 44786 or by e-mail at ombud@creditombud.org.za