The Road Accident Fund (RAF) will ask the court for permission to stay hundreds of millions of rands in claims due to several law firms until they have repaid duplicate funds paid to them in error.

It will ask the Gauteng High Court (Pretoria) this month to suspend the debt due for claims settled or where court orders have been granted.

The Mercury reports that if granted, the order will culminate in a later application in which it will ask the Legal Practice Council to appoint a curator to administer the trust accounts of those firms that had received double payments, but refused to repay the money.

The RAF has lodged a formal complaint against more than 100 law firms with the Legal Practice Council in its bid to recover the duplicate payments.

However, some firms have refused to repay the money.

In a letter sent to the Legal Practice Council, the RAF called on the body to investigate the conduct of 102 law firms, which it said owed it more than R340m.

In an affidavit regarding the coming urgent application, RAF chief executive Collins Letsoalo said some of the firms who had not repaid the money and in turn had not been paid for other claims by the entity, were now threatening to immediately execute orders obtained against its assets.

Full report in The Mercury (subscription needed)