Rule 43 of the Uniform Rules of the High Court and Rule 58 of the Magistrate’s Court Rules provide for interim relief pending divorce proceedings being finalised. If you or your spouse has instituted divorce proceedings, whether you have children or not, either you or your spouse can apply to the court for an interim order for maintenance for yourself and the children and for care and contact arrangements in respect of any minor children.
Rule 43/58 proceedings are regarded as urgent and, accordingly, very specific rules apply to such matters. The applicant launches the proceedings by serving a short affidavit (sworn statement) on the respondent setting out the relief sought and the grounds upon which such relief is sought. The respondent then has ten court days in which to serve his/her sworn reply, setting out the reasons for opposition to the relief sought by the applicant. In such proceedings, the sworn statements of both parties should not be more than 20 pages each, plus annexures which will assist the court to come to a decision.
Once the period of ten days has expired, the applicant can approach the clerk/registrar of the court for a date on the unopposed roll. Such proceedings are generally heard within three weeks. Once an order is granted, such order remains in place until the divorce is finalised or it set aside or amended by the court upon application by one of the parties.
Our trained professionals have extensive experience in such matters. Whether you are the applicant or the respondent it is vital that your case is adequately put before the court in a coherent manner and that all relevant evidence and information is attached to your sworn statement. If you are the applicant you will be required to satisfy the court that your claim is valid, there is a need on your part and that the respondent can afford to make the payment(s) required by you. If, on the other hand, you are the respondent, you will need to show why the order should not be granted in favour of the applicant.
We can assist you to draft your sworn statement and collate the necessary documents and brief Counsel to argue the matter in court.
Below is a useful organogram which you can download showing what a Rule 43 Application typically covers.