Legal and Complaints Division is the heart of the South African Board for Sheriffs. Its mandate is to ensure the overall compliance with the Sheriffs Act,(Act 90 of 1986) Sheriffs uphold the rights of the people as entrenched in the South African Constitution.
The synopses of the Legal and Complaints responsibilities are detailed as follows:
- Resolving disputes between the sheriff and the public
- Attending and representing the Board on disciplinary enquiries for sheriffs
- Representing the Board on internal appeals against the decision of the Board
- Receive and process claims made against the Fidelity Fund
- Administer this claims process from receipt of the claim to finality at the point when payment is made to claimants.
- Defending and administering civil action against the Board and the Fund
- Ensuring the legal competence and legal compliance of internal documents and agreements.
- Conducting on-site inspections at sheriff’s offices when necessary.
- Conducting Desktop Inspections of sheriffs’ accounts and files.
- Prosecuting of sheriffs at Disciplinary hearings and Appeals.
- Ensuring legal compliance of the Board’s documentation in general.
- Drafting charge sheets.
- Drafting removal and suspension memos for approval by the Department of Justice. This process only comes into operation when a sheriff is found guilty of gross misconduct and the Board makes a recommendation that the relevant sheriff is to be removed from office.
- Instructing the Board’s appointed attorneys on pending civil matters.
- When a penalty is imposed wherein a removal is recommended, the division ensures that the fine payments, if any imposed, are diarised for collection and are duly collected.