Legaltech 2018 vision

Ari Kaplan speaks with some participants from the LexisNexis Accelerator Program for legal technology startups. They are: Ryan Alshak, the CEO of Ping, Alex Hewitt, the director of operations for vTestify, Tunji Williams, the co-founder and CEO of dealWIP, as well as David Schnurman, the CEO of Lawline and author of the upcoming book, Break through Your Walls: Bring Your Entrepreneurial Sledgehammer.
Read more at ABA Journal...

Partners Andrew Taylor and Kyle Torrington

Legal Legends is providing solutions for SMEs who cannot afford legal services for their businesses. Describing itself as Africa’s, first legal eCommerce website, Legal Legends offers affordable legal services for entrepreneurs, start-ups and small businesses. Interesting enough and quite refreshing is the fact that their services are offered at fixed upfront prices.

Pierre Aurel, Strategic Project Manager at e4

Once the Protection of Personal Information Act, 2013 (PoPI Act) is made effective, companies will have a year’s grace period to become compliant with the Act. In the meantime, agreements between corporate clients and their suppliers are already being updated to require compliance with data processing provisions contained in the PoPI Act.

Webber Wentzel Ignite Programme

Entrepreneurs, start-ups and scale-ups are a lifeline to South Africa’s economy.  It is however a harsh environment and many entrepreneurs find themselves in a situation where they are wearing many hats and navigating potential pitfalls without the knowledge that many professionals have from years of experience.

Law Society of Northern Provinces

The Law Society of Northern Provinces (LSNP) has noted the criticism raised against the judiciary from various quarters following the judgment, given by a full Bench in the matter between Corruption Watch & others versus the President in the Gauteng Division of the High Court (Pretoria), with dismay. 

The value of a lawyer today

‘What’s a lawyer worth?’ is a serious question that could also launch a stand-up routine. In a free market economy, compensation is generally linked to the value of the service; supply and demand; complexity/specialization; and urgency/available resources. Law has operated as a guild-- not a competitive market—until recently. And that is the seminal reason why lawyers are so expensive.
Read more at Forbes...

DLA Piper launches Accelerate

DLA Piper has launched Accelerate, a website devoted to founders, entrepreneurs, startups, emerging growth companies and the investor community. Accelerate offers technology-enabled tools and services for the initial phases of a company's development, as well as guidance and best practices on how to position new companies for growth and success.

NuvaLaw opening office in Holland

Cape Town legaltech startup NuvaLaw yesterday signed an agreement with The Hague Business Agency and other Dutch authorities to set up in Leiden, The Netherlands to initially partner with large insurance companies in the European country, especially in The Hague and Leiden. The startup is one of three South African companies that will open offices in The Hague region, the Hague Business Agency said in a press release.
Read more at Ventureburn...

Feedback technology for judges

In a chat with New Telegraph, Legal Technologies Company, LawPavilion’s Managing Director, Mr. Ope Olugasa, said the technology which was developed while working closely with the Court of Appeal, the Appellate Feedback System for Judges (AFSJ), was conceptualized by the company in response to obvious need by High Court Judges to be promptly notified when matters ruled upon went on appeal had been decided upon by appellate Courts.
Read more at New Telegraph Online...

Law Society of South Africa

The Law Society of South Africa (LSSA) takes serious issue with statements made by the Higher Education Transformation Network (HETN) that the LSSA has pressurised the Council for Higher Education (CHE) to withdraw the accreditation of the law faculty at Walter Sisulu University to present the LLB degree. ‘Nothing could be further from the truth,’ say LSSA Co-Chairpersons Walid Brown and David Bekker.

Greg Brown (right), Divisional Director of LexisNexis Data Services, receiving the award from Phumelele Motsoahae

LexisNexis Legal & Professional, a leading global provider of information and analytics, saw its LexisNexis South Africa operation announced as Winner of the prestigious Innovation through Technology award at the 15th annual National Business Awards, held on 16 November at Emperors Palace. The company was up against impressive contenders including runner-up AECOM, Sentech and Dell Computers.

Zimbabwe Environmental Law Association

This app will facilitate the access to labour and environmental laws for the mine workers and affected rural communities in Zimbabwe, a network of online mobile hubs would be managed by the Zimbabwe Environmental Law Association (ZELA).

Baker McKenzie

The Constitutional Court this week handed down judgment in a matter that will be of interest to parties who contract with state owned companies. On 27 September 2006, the State Information Technology Agency SOC Ltd ("SITA") entered into an agreement with Gijima Holdings (Pty) Ltd ("Gijima") in terms of which Gijima would provide information technology services ("IT services") to the South African Police Services ("SAPS agreement").

Comic Contracts by Robert de Rooy

Comic Contracts creates legally binding visual contracts for vulnerable people, which reduces contract inequality, improves understanding and aligns mutual expectations.

CLS AGM in East London 2017

The Cape Law Society annual general meeting and gala dinner was held at the Hemingways Hotel and Conference Centre last Friday and Saturday in East London.

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie in Johannesburg has announced it will offer three external candidates a place on the firm’s Practice Management Training (PMT) programme for new partners in 2018. PMT is offered by the Law Society of South Africa (LSSA) and now also in-house by Baker McKenzie, through a Joint Training Agreement with the LSSA.

Lady Liberty South Africa

A '1st in South Africa' mobile legal office, taking law to marginalised women by traveling to poor remote areas, and virtually by using mobile technology.

SchoemanLaw Inc

In an entrepreneur’s life, access to speedy and reliable legal services are crucial. Legal solutions must keep up with the pace of a business and if it can’t, the reality is that it is not considered at all. If not considered, there is a real risk which, statistically, is one of the main causes of business failure. In the case of a start-up or SME, this often means the end of an idea or a dream.

Simon Colman

In South Africa alone, 16 million people use Facebook, 7.7 million are on Twitter and LinkedIn has 6.1 million users, according to the Ornico SA Social Media Landscape report for 2018. By simply using these platforms, all these millions of users unknowingly expose themselves to possible law suits, which could cost them hundreds of thousands of rands in legal defence costs or pay-outs if found guilty.


For over 30 years, Sabinet has been committed to changing lives through providing access to information. Sharing knowledge not only empowers individuals but it supports education and upliftment and in turn influences the greater knowledge economy. As gateways to knowledge and culture, libraries are key partners in the realisation of this vision.

e4 Interns Group picture

Internships provide a vital link between academic learning and professional employment, and with strategic partnerships, these internships can be effective for business and the youth. With this in mind, e4 partnered with the EOH Youth Job Creation Initiative and the National Skills Fund (NSF) Project and Internship Program to give aspiring technology graduates the opportunity to gain both valuable and practical work experience to help kick-start their careers. 

Law Society of South Africa

The National Forum on the Legal Profession (NF) held its tenth plenary meeting on 14 October 2017. At this meeting the recommendations to be made to Justice Minister Michael Masutha in terms of s 97(1)(a) of the Legal Practice Act 28 of 2014 (LPA) were finalised. The recommendations were submitted this week and deal with the following:

HiiL Innovating Justice

South Africa is a nation in which our men have been historically bonded in violence and when you mix that with poverty, substance abuse, unemployment and cultural values, you then get an instance where South Africa is now becoming a country that is breeding violent men systematically. The question is how do you reduce social fabric crimes, such as gender based violence as well as to make constitution values our lived daily values.

Road Rules app

Road Rules offer a few services to the road users in Zimbabwe, primarily the focus was on helping new drivers pass their drivers exam, but the other more important aspect is the education of road users on what the fines should be when the traffic police issue spot fines.

Webber Wentzel Attorneys

Webber Wentzel is the only South African law firm to have achieved tier 1 rankings across the board in IFLR1000’s Financial and Corporate Guide 2018 and they have kept this momentum going for four consecutive years.

Law Society of South Africa

The Law Society of South Africa (LSSA) condemns the reported behaviour of former Eskom evidence leader, Pretoria attorney Sebetja Matsaung, towards Financial Mail deputy editor, Sikonathi Mantshantsha on Friday.


With the Supreme Court of Appeal dismissing President Jacob Zuma’s and the NPA’s spy tapes appeal, it got Errol Horwitz thinking about the current state of our legal fraternity. Like many South Africans, Horwitz questions how Zuma has managed to delay the process for such a long time.
Read more at BizNews...

John Jeffery speaking at the HiiL challenge

The OPEN Maboneng venue was abuzz with a wonderful collection of people, business and non-profit organisations who have made it their passion to ensure that people of all societies have access to their legal rights in Southern Africa.

Conveyancing with BlockChain

A Swansea dentist is the first property buyer in the UK to exchange contracts digitally in a process which its promoters claim has the potential to remove the need for solicitors in transactions. The buyer acquired a £700,000 commercial property in Trowbridge in an online deal secured by blockchain digital encryption technology. This is a system for rendering blocks of data tamper-proof by distributing them across ‘shared ledgers’. It is best known for underpinning the bitcoin virtual currency.
Read more at The UK Law Gazette...

Morne van der Merwe

Global law firm Baker McKenzie has announced Morne van der Merwe’s appointment as managing partner of its Johannesburg office. In addition, Darryl Bernstein has been named as the new head of Dispute Resolution; Nick Altini is the new head of the Competition & Antitrust practice and Kieran Whyte was recently appointed Head of the Energy Mining and Infrastructure (EMI) practice.

Property transfer process

A new kid on the block, Proxi Smart, has sent the South African legal fraternity into panic mode with a plan to snatch from lawyers a significant portion of conveyancing work. The firm registered in 2015 has crossed swords with the Law Society of South Africa (LSSA) in a David versus Goliath like battle that is set to unfold in court. A lot is stake in the way of the Uber like wars.
Read more at ProBonoMatters...

Jeremiah Pietersen

In keeping with their continued support of LIASA, Sabinet was this year proud to sponsor the LIASA Librarian of the Year 2017 2nd Runner-Up Award. Hearty congratulations go to Jeremiah Pietersen on his richly deserved achievement.


A year ago, Western Cape librarian Mercia Sias was recognised by LIASA for her outstanding achievements and accomplishments in the library and information services sector. She was awarded first runner-up SA Librarian of the Year 2016, an award proudly sponsored by Sabinet. 

Lawyer salary survey by Robert Walters

A salary survey by professional recruitment firm, Robert Walters, lays out the hiring and salary trends in the legal sector in South Africa in 2017. Robert Walter outlines the trends seen in these sectors in 2016 and what the outcome of 2017 is likely to be in comparison.
Read more at BusinessTech...

Epoq Legal

In the age of information technology and innovation, legal services are sadly still inaccessible to the majority of the South African population, but with the recent entry of Epoq Legal into the South African marketplace – able to provide online legal document and form drafting services unlike any other in the industry at a fraction of the cost – the hope is that this will no longer be the case.

Webber Wentzel wins African Legal Awards

Webber Wentzel is proud to have received two awards in the prestigious African Legal Awards hosted by Legal Week and the Corporate Lawyers Association of South Africa in Johannesburg on Friday 8 September, 2017.

Jacquie Cassette, Director and National Practice Head for the Pro Bono and Human Rights practice

With the air of high society that fancy finger food and wine inevitably provides, the Social Kitchen at Hyde Park Corner’s Exclusive Books provided an unusual venue for the Annual 2017 ProBono.Org Awards. However, on the evening of 7 September amongst the name tags and high fashion, a more pervasive air of humility filled the room. It was a time to honour those who ordinarily seek not to be honoured and who, at all costs, would avoid the limelight if they could.

Wills week 2017

Have you been recently divorced or widowed? Have you bought a new home? Have you been cohabitating with your partner for some time? Do you have a number of people that depend on you financially every month? If so, it is advisable to have a legally sound will to ensure that there are not competing claims on your estate when you pass away.

innovating justice

The Hague Institute for Innovation of Law (HiiL) is pleased to announce the regional semi-finals for its annual Innovating Justice Challenge. Seven entrepreneurs and innovators from South Africa and Zimbabwe have been selected to take part in the event, which will take place at OPEN Maboneng in Johannesburg on 13 October 2017.


When it comes to good corporate governance, “the power is no longer in the boardroom. It is in the smartphone.” This was the key takeaway from a recent compliance business breakfast, hosted by LexisNexis South Africa at its Durban head office, where guest speaker, Michael Judin emphasised the influence of the digital revolution on the King IV™ Report on Corporate Governance. 

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