Although there are different types of prescription, the general position with debts is that after 3 years from when the debt becomes due, it prescribes unless certain requirements have been met. The Prescription Act 68 of 1969 states that the running of prescription may be interrupted (and will thus start again) by an express or tacit acknowledgement of liability by the debtor.
In the Supreme Court of Appeal case Anglorand Securities Ltd v Mudau & Another, it was held that what is actually required is an acknowledgement of liability not merely an acknowledgement of indebtedness. The distinction is that an admission of liability must cover every element of the debt. The debtor must acknowledge its existence and that he was in fact liable at the time the statement was made.
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