Michael Honiball

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Location: Johannesburg

Tel: +27 11 535 8136

Fax: +27 11 535 8632

Email: mhoniball@werksmans.com


Director Michael Honiball is the firm’s Head of International Tax. He was previously a Partner at Webber Wentzel, where he was Head of International Tax for the South Africa firm. Prior to this, Michael was a Director of KMPG South Africa where he headed up first the International Tax Department, then the Transfer Pricing Department. Michael is an attorney and conveyancer of the High Court of South Africa and also a Professor of Taxation at the University of Johannesburg, where he lectures in international tax law and transfer pricing. He is also a practising solicitor of the Senior Courts of England and Wales. A SAIT Master Tax Practitioner (2005 to present), he is regularly recognised for excellence in his field and has co-authored a number of key publications.

  • Tax
  • Mergers, acquisitions and reorganisations of corporate entities
  • International tax planning for corporates and wealthy individuals and families, including:
    • controlled foreign companies
    • foreign trusts
    • transfer pricing and thin capitalisation
    • settlor and beneficiary charges
    • double tax agreements
    • Financial services taxation
    • Tax structuring for international investment funds
    • Private equity deal structuring
    • Tax litigation, alternative dispute resolution and settlements
  • Taxation
  • Trust Law
  • Exchange Controls
  • LLM (Tax Law) (Rand Afrikaans University)
  • LLB (Stellenbosch University)
  • BA (Stellenbosch University)
  • TEP of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners
  • Corporate Law Diploma (cum laude) (Rand Afrikaans University)
  • Higher Diploma in Tax Law (Rand Afrikaans University)
  • 2015 Director, Werksmans


  • Consistently recognised in international ratings. Named as:
    • a ranked lawyer in tax by Chambers Global (2010-2016, 2018,2019 and 2020);
    • ranked Private Client Lawyer of the Year - South Africa - Finance Monthly Global 2017;
    • ranked Private Client Global Elite and Ones to Watch 2018 by Legal Week;
    • ranked Solicitor of the Year in Tax - South Africa by Lawyer Monthly 2018;
    • ranked as a leading lawyer in Private Wealth Law by Chambers High Net Worth Guide (2017 - 2020);
    • named amongst the world’s leading corporate tax lawyers in Who’s Who Legal: Corporate Tax (2017);
    • a recommended lawyer (Tax) by The Legal500 Europe, Middle East & Africa 2014 - 2018;
    • a solicitor of the Senior Courts of England and Wales by Who's Who Legal 2013 - 2016; and
    • a legal expert (Tax) by Legal500 EMEA 2012-2016, 2018 and 2019
    • a recommended lawyer (Tax) by The Legal500 (2020)
  • Regularly nominated to appear in the Guide to World's Leading Tax Advisers and in the Guide to the World's Leading Transfer Pricing Advisers as one of the pre-eminent practitioners in this field;
  • Endorsed as a leading Tax lawyer by PLC Which Lawyer 2012;
  • Professor of Taxation, University of Johannesburg;
  • Member of the Executive Committee of the Cape Town branch of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners, 2013 to 2015;
  • Member of the Executive Committee of the International Fiscal Association (SA Branch) (2004 to present);
  • Member of The International Academy of Estate and Trust Law (2010 to present);
  • Member of the Law Society of England and Wales (2013 to present);
  • Member of the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants Transfer Pricing Sub-Committee (2013 to present);
  • Member of the South African Institute of Tax (SAIT) National Tax Policy Committee (2013 to present);
  • Member of SAIT International Tax Committee (2013 to present); and
  • Master Tax Practitioner (2005 to present).
  • Co-author and/or author of the following reference books on taxation:
    • Olivier, L. & Honiball, M. 2009, The Taxation of Trusts in South Africa. Cape Town: Siber Ink;
    • Olivier, L. & Honiball, M. 2011, International Tax: A South African Perspective. Fifth Edition. Cape Town: Siber Ink; and
    • IBFD Permanent Establishments- South Africa (IBFD 2017) (Annual Update) (2008-2017).