Category: Uncategorized

October 1, 2019

Spare the rod, spoil the child?

In our law, the crime of assault is the unlawful and intentional applying of force to the person of another (or threatening force). As far as the forceis concerned, the degree is irrelevant; depending on the circumstances, it could be a mere touch.  Before 18 September 2019, parents in South Africa had a common law right […]

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October 1, 2019

Maternity leave: Your rights

There’s plenty to keep you busy while you’re preparing for the birth of your baby, but make sure you spend time familiarising yourself with your company’s maternity leave policy while you decorate the nursery and get your baby’s outfits together.  How much maternity leave are you entitled to?  The Basic Conditions of Employment Act, you’re […]

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September 9, 2019

Your rights in a roadblock

As we gear down for the end of the year, roadblocks are more likely to start cropping up. If you get stopped in one, knowing your rights (and responsibilities) can protect you.   First off, it’s important to distinguish between the two types of roadblocks: An informal roadblock, which is typically intended to catch drunk drivers […]

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September 9, 2019

Keeping your house in order: Domestic workers and the law

Many South African families employ a domestic worker, either on a part-time or full-time basis. The employee-employer relationship is often casual, and the domestic worker can come to feel part of the family. However, there are still legal requirements that the employer must adhere to. Doing so, and making sure everything is agreed upon in […]

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September 2, 2019

Legal process and state capture: Slow but sure

I expect that most of our readers, like me, feel a bit punch-drunk by all of the waves of bad news and negative sentiment that seem to have been relentlessly washing over us for the past few months. When Jacob Zuma was finally prised from office and Cyril Ramaphosa took the helm, we had a […]

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August 1, 2019

TO THE LETTER: SOCIAL MEDIA AND THE LAW

South Africans spend about a third of their day online, and two and a half hours of that is dedicated to social media. We’ve become so used to scrolling, posting, commenting and liking that we don’t think twice about our actions — and whether they might be illegal. Here are the three most important things […]

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August 1, 2019

When mediation’s a better option than litigation

Any relationship, be it personal, professional or commercial, is certain to experience conflict at some point. When the parties involved can’t resolve that conflict themselves, they often turn to what they see as the only other option – their attorney.  Litigation is a costly, time-intensive way to settle a dispute, and often damages the relationship […]

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July 1, 2019

Agreements between landlords and tenants

In the current economic climate, many people rent, rather than own, the property they reside in. However, a bad tenant or nightmare landlord can create severe problems for the other party. To avoid misery for either party down the road, a clear agreement fair to both parties should be put in place, with the tenant […]

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July 1, 2019

Pay back the money?

On 18 June, an internal error saw FNB unwittingly paying out money to clients, with some seeing up to R3 600 extra in their accounts. After realising the mistake, the bank was swift to react and announced that it would take steps to retrieve the money. This didn’t go down well with some customers, who didn’t […]

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May 31, 2019

LABOUR LAW AND YOUR EMPLOYEES’ ANNUAL LEAVE

Most small businesses do not have dedicate HR departments, so when a member of staff plans a trips or wants a few days off, the leave process is often left to be dealt with by the owner. While leave entitlement and processes should be stipulated in the contract between an employer and employee, here are […]

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May 31, 2019

PROTECT YOUR BUSINESS’S INTELLECT PROPERTY

Intellect property, or IP, might be an intangible asset, but that doesn’t make it any less important than physical property or money in the bank.  It’s what you build your business on, and includes all the knowledge, ideas and processes on which your business is based. As such, it’s vital that small business owners take […]

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April 17, 2019

What to do if a loved one dies without leaving a will

If someone dies without leaving a will, it usually causes a great deal of panic among those left behind.   The immediate fear is that SARS is going to come along and take all of the deceased’s assets for the state coffers. Fortunately, this does not happen. But when someone dies without a will, those who […]

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April 3, 2019

6 things to bear in mind when you draw up a will

We tend to not give a thought to making a will unless we are diagnosed with a life-threatening disease or have reached an age where our friends are dying off at an alarming rate. But death can come unexpectedly, like a thief in the night (to quote the Bible). Every day we read news reports […]

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January 18, 2019

Carnage on the roads

The recent festive season seems to have been a particularly bloody one on our roads.  We don’t have the final statistics yet, but between 1 and 18 December 800 people had died, a 16% increase over the corresponding period in 2017. Of course, the problem is not only over periods such as the festive season […]

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December 7, 2018

Common law and common sense

One of the things that I love about being a lawyer is observing the evolution of law. We have two sources of law: statute law, which consists of laws passed by parliament, and common law. Common law is unwritten law that has developed over the years. It probably started with the Ten Commandments. South African […]

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