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“Property acquired by spouses during marriage is presumed to be marital property. Upon dissolution of the marriage, the property will be shared in accordance with the “equality is equity” principle except where the spouse who acquired the property can adduce evidence to rebut the presumption”. After a divorce trial at the High Court between Mr. Adjei (the husband) and Mrs. Adjei (the wife), the judge granted the order for divorce but dismissed the husband’s petition for custody of the children. Custody was granted to the wife with the husband having limited rights of access to them. The trial judge held that the four flats, which were the subject of dispute were acquired by the husband during the marriage and at a time when the wife was “nurturing the family unit by cooking meals, cleaning, doing laundry and all the associated chores that the stay-at-home partner in a marriage is expected to do without remuneration. Upon this finding, the trial judge ordered that the wife be entitled to one of the flats as the matrimonial home. Furthermore, the trial judge ordered the husband to pay the sum of five hundred thousand Ghana cedis (GHC500,000.00) to the wife as alimony and one thousand, five...

“Applications for the adduction of fresh evidence on appeal are not the sole preserve of an Appellant in the appeal; a Respondent may be granted leave to adduce fresh evidence on appeal” The Appellant appealed to the Supreme Court against the decision of the Court of Appeal that a parcel of land which the Appellant acquired through a lease did not form part of the vested land by the Stool Lands (Efutu and Gomoa Ajumako Instrument, 1961) (E.I 206). The Appellant was permitted to “adduce” (meaning, to present or offer) fresh evidence in the appeal. In reaction to this, the Respondent applied for authorization to also adduce fresh evidence to counter the Appellant’s fresh evidence. The Supreme Court held that under Rule 76 of the Supreme Court Rules, 1996 (C.I 16), all parties to an appeal may seek leave to adduce fresh evidence where it is in the interest of justice. In such instances, the Applicant must demonstrate that the evidence was not available at trial or could not have been obtained by the Applicant for use during the trial despite conducting reasonable due diligence. In addition to this, where the Appellant is permitted to adduce fresh evidence and the Respondent seeks to...

The pre-independence and post-independence era of Ghana saw many extended families living together as a household, resulting in a relatively low demand for housing. This trend has altered with modernisation, as increasingly, more nuclear families prefer to live as a separate unit. Residential housing units are now a major part of Ghana’s real estate sector. Read more...

What is the Purpose of the Real Estate Agency Act, 2020 (Act 1047)? The Real Estate Agency Act, 2020 (Act 1047) (the “Act”) was enacted to regulate real estate agency practice, including the sale, purchase, rental and leasing of real estate.[1]. It also introduces licensing of real estate agents and brokers. Which real estate transactions does the Act regulate? The Act regulates real estate transactions including the sale, purchase, rental and leasing of real estate.[2] The Act applies only to transactions in which there is a principal-agent relationship for instance between a real estate agent or broker and a client. It does not apply to real estate transactions in which a person acts in their own capacity, as an employee, as a trustee pursuant to a court order or where there is no principal-agency relationship.[3] How does the Act affect real estate agents or brokers? Every real estate broker or agent seeking to operate in Ghana must obtain a license from the Real Estate Agency Council (the “Council”). [4]  Additionally, engaging in a real estate transaction in that capacity without a license is a criminal offence.[5] All real estate transactions must utilize the official real estate forms provided by the Council. ...

The Ghana Enterprises Agency (GEA) Act, 2020, (Act 1043) (the “Act”) has repealed the National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI) Act, 1981, (Act 434) and the Ghanaian Enterprises Development Act, 1975 (NRCD 330).[1] As a foundation to this development, NBSSI, was established as the apex body for the development of small-scale industries in Ghana.[2] It functioned as a non-profit public sector organisation under the Ministry of Trade and Industry[3] with a mandate delimited to the Small-Scale Industry (SSI). Although this classification was relevant at the time of its establishment, globally, the emphasis has changed from Small Scale Industries to Micro, Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (MSMEs). In keeping with the times, the Act, creates the Ghana Enterprises Agency (the “Agency”) to replace the NBSSI. The Agency represents the entire continuum of enterprises that fall within the MSME class. The Act provides an appropriate institutional and legal framework for the coordination and promotion of programs and projects for the development of the MSME sector in Ghana. Some changes and notable inroads made by the Act are highlighted below. This will be done by looking at the nature of the Agency, the functions of the Agency, funding of the Agency, the establishment of the MSME Fund...

The Covid-19 pandemic quickly instilled feelings of bewilderment and all-consuming fear for what would lay ahead. Aside from the health of our people, the health of the economy within which we operate became of great concern. As a law firm leader, my concern extended to issues of cash management, liquidity and to my strategy in respect of avoiding the possibility of a business downturn. Read more  ...

The Transfer Pricing Regulations, 2020 (L.I. 2412) has been passed, bringing into force exciting measures to manage transfer pricing relations between parties in a controlled relationship. L.I. 2412, in keeping with the times, introduces rules on documentation, measures affecting technology transfer agreements, safe harbour rules, as well as specific considerations in relation to cost contribution arrangements, financing arrangements, and business restructuring arrangements. In this blogpost we highlight the novel rules in the transfer pricing regime of Ghana that the taxpayer needs to look out for.   New Documentation Requirements  The most prominent change introduced by L.I. 2412 relates to documentation. A taxpayer is required to keep and file various documentation which inform the Regulator in the assessment of transactions. It also embraces a paperless approach towards the filing process. Contemporaneous Operational Documentation Taxpayers are to maintain contemporaneous documentation, including a Master File and a Local File which are to be filed electronically.  The Master File should contain relevant operational information on the Company at the group level while the Local File focuses on the entity in Ghana and its activities.[1] An exception to this record-keeping obligation is where the monetary value of the specific arrangement does not exceed the Ghana Cedi equivalent of...

“There is a point of diversion between Redundancy occasioned under section 65(1) and 65(2) of Act 651: Redundancy under section 65(2) unlike under 65(1) mandatorily requires the employer to pay the employee Redundancy Pay”. The employment of two workers were terminated by the Appellant Bank. The Letters of Termination stated that significant changes had occurred in the demands or skills and competencies required for the delivery of the Bank’s objectives, and as such their employment was terminated. The Appellant Bank undertook to submit proposals for the negotiation of a Redundancy package with the labour representative of the affected employees. However, negotiations broke down due to the inaction of the Appellant Bank. A complaint was lodged at the Labour Commission (the “Respondent”). The Respondent determined that the Complainants should be paid Redundancy Pay. The Respondent subsequently applied to the High Court to enforce its decision. The High Court dismissed the application on the grounds that the ruling of the Respondent was not justified in law since the conditions precedent for Redundancy were not proven. The Respondent appealed. The Court of Appeal unanimously upheld the appeal. The Appellant Bank appealed to the Supreme Court. One of the grounds of appeal was: that the Court of Appeal...

The importance of food production and supply cannot be underestimated in any economy. For many years in Ghana, agriculture has been known as a vital part of the economy. As at 2019, the sector employed 33.5% of the labor force many of whom were women, actively participating in the value chain. Read More...