Monthly Archives: March 2014

Historic Legal Practice Act signals the start of a new dispensation for the legal profession

The Law Society of South Africa (LSSA) welcomed the promulgation of the Legal Practice Act 28 of 2014, gazetted on 22 September 2014 with the following statement:

 “This is a historic event for the legal profession as it signals the formal start to a new dispensation, which we believe will usher in a transparent, transformed, public-centred and responsive profession – changes which the attorneys’ profession has long supported.”

The press release  adds further: “The LSSA has cooperated fully in the long process that has led to the Legal Practice Act and we commit ourselves to cooperating actively with all the relevant stakeholders in the transitional phase that will come into effect once the implementation date for Chapter 10 of the Act dealing with the National Forum for the Legal Profession, is promulgated... Read More

Case law: ABSA Bank Ltd v McCreath: protecting a party while under a “justifiable misapprehension” caused by another who requires such signature

The general rule of our law is that in signing a document, a person is taken to be bound by the ordinary meaning and effect of the words which appear over his signature.

There are exceptions, however, to protect someone signing under a justifiable misapprehension, caused by the other party requiring such signature, as to the effect of the document.

In this case the respondent and signatory of the documents argued that he was made to believe he was signing mere “standard terms and conditions” and was not advised the documents constituted a suretyship... Read More

Case law: Buffelsdrift Game Reserve Owners Association v Holkom & Others: the keeping of pets and (non)enforcement of HOA rules

The keeping of pets is a frequent bone of contention in estates managed by home owners associations. So too are complaints by owners regarding non-enforcement of the applicable rules by managing bodies.

The facts of the dispute were as follows:

The Buffelsdrift Game Reserve is a private property development.  A Home Owners Association (“HOA”) was established and all owners in the development were obliged to become members thereof. This was included as a condition in the sale agreement of the property... Read More

SCA issues landmark ruling that email negotiations and typed email signatures now binding

Our Supreme Court of Appeal ruled on 21 November 2014 that oral negotiations between parties that have been reduced to writing in the form of emails constitute an agreement to cancel their written agreements.

The court went further and found that typewritten names of the parties at the foot of emails constitute ‘data’ that is logically associated with the data in the body of the emails, as envisaged in the definition of an ‘electronic signature’.

Although these signatures should not be confused with an advanced electronic signature, they satisfy the requirement of a signature and have the effect of authenticating the information contained in the emails... Read More

Authentication of documents for use inside and outside of South Africa

Ever had to sign or legalise documents within South Africa for use abroad or vice versa? If you have, then you have probably experienced the frustration of being told that the documents have been validly  executed, but not properly authenticated and therefore not suitable for use in a deeds office or other formal purpose. Ms. Allison Schoeman (Strauss Daly Umhlanga branch) compiled this practical guide to ensure that your documents are in order, which can be downloaded here... Read More

Case law: Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa / case number 30/2014

On Sunday 10 August 2014 on the SABC SAFM programme, ‘Media at SAFM’ a caller by the name of ‘Sig from Randburg’ called into this programme between 9h00 and 9h30. Amongst other things he referred on air to the Cabinet (the Executive Arm of the State) as an “entirely corrupt Cabinet”. The presenter did not correct the statement. A complaint was received from a Cabinet Minister arguing that the statement was defamatory and that the presenter should have asked the caller either to prove the statement or to withdraw it... Read More

Case Law: The MEC for Transport for KZN vs A S Loxton

Strauss Daly successfully appealed on behalf of the MEC for Transport for KZN, against a High Court judgment relating to alleged negligence on the its department’s part by failing to adequately warn motorists of obstructions on a stretch of road near Umkomaas.  The Court found that the department took sufficient measures in the circumstances and could not be expected to guard against foolhardy recklessness, as was displayed by the respondent.  The judgment was regarded as reportable by the judges. Read the full law report here... Read More

Equality, race and equity in the workplace: the Constitutional Court speaks

After a 9 year battle, the Constitutional Court handed down the final say in the matter of the South African Police Service (SAPS) and Solidarity (a trade union) on behalf of Renate Barnard on 2 September 2014.

At the heart of the matter is the issue of equality, race and equity in the workplace.

Barnard had applied for the same post within SAPS on three occasions. On all three occasions she was the highest scoring candidate, however her appointment was always refused by the National Police Commissioner, who was the ultimate decision maker... Read More

Trading with medicine and medical devices

It is understandable that due to the nature of medicine and medical devices that the trading of these products requires a well rounded regulatory framework.

 The Medicines and Related Substances Act 101 of 1965 regulates and controls amongst other things the importation of medicine and medical devices in South Africa. In terms of South African law all medical related products available to the South African public must be registered with the Medicine Control Council to ensure the safety, efficacy and quality of medicines and related products... Read More

POPI: How it affects you

The Protection of Personal Information Act (the ‘POPI Act’) has a significant impact on the way in which organisations or entities collect, store, process and utilise information to, from and between customers, clients and employees.

The POPI Act promotes the protection of personal information processed by a public and private body[1]. It aims to introduce certain information on protection principles to establish minimum requirements for the processing of personal information.

The POPI Act should be interpreted in a way that does not prevent a public or private body from exercising or performing its powers, functions and duties related to processing personal information... Read More

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