The Judiciary of South Africa

Dated: 17 April 2020

To:

  1. All Judges of the Gauteng Division of the High Court, Pretoria and Johannesburg
  2. All Judiciary Heads of the Regional and District Courts, Gauteng Division
  3. Court staff, Professional Bodies, Practitioners and members of the public

JUDGE PRESIDENT’S DIRECTIVE (17 APRIL DIRECTIVE)

1. These directives are issued in conformity with the directives of the Chief Justice on 17 March 2020 and 17 April 2020 and in terms of the authority vested in the Head of Court in terms of section 8(4) (b) of the Superior Courts Act 10 of 2013 and effective immediately upon publication on 17 April 2020.

2. These directives set out how, and under what conditions, all matters enrolled in the Gauteng Divisions shall be undertaken during the period of the lockdown and until the end of Term 2 of 2020, including the first week of the July 2020 recess. The Directive of 25 March 2020 in respect of the High Courts of the Gauteng Division remain in force except where varied in these directives. The prospects of long term full lockdown or scaled down restrictions in movement after the lockdown has ended, and prudent behaviour to minimise exposure to infection, informs the policy choices.

3. The general principle to be observed is that physical contact among persons be eliminated or minimized. To this end:

3.1. In accordance with the practice in the High Courts of the Gauteng Division, pursuant to Directive no 1 of 2020 (the implementation of CaseLines in the Gauteng Division – attached hereto) documents must be uploaded in all matters, save where a Judge, in exercising a discretion, permits the documents to be served by email. No matter that is noncompliant with this paragraph shall be entertained.

3.2. Matters on paper (Appeals and Applications) shall not, except where directed otherwise by the Judge seized with the matter, enjoy an oral hearing in open Court. Submissions may be advanced via CaseLines or via email and oral hearings may be dealt with by video conferencing where Parties wish be heard orally, in accordance with ad hoc directives issued by the Judge which are appropriate to the circumstances.

3.3. Matters that require evidence to be adduced shall not, in general, be conducted in open Court, and the Judge seized with the matter shall exercise a discretion about an appropriate mode of hearing, which may include receiving evidence on affidavit and the utilisation of video conferencing, and if otherwise unavoidable, the convening of a physical hearing.

3.4. The Judge seized with a matter in which video conferencing is used shall exercise a discretion as to any liability for the costs implications of such utilisation.

CIVIL TRIALS

4. These directives apply to all Trial matters for the rest of Term 2 of 2020. Re-allocations of set-down dates for matters

5. The Directive of 25 March 2020 concerning the automatic removal of trials set down between 14 April and 16 April 2020 is hereby revoked.

6. All trial cases which were or are set down on dates between 14 April to 30 April 2020, are hereby automatically removed from those rolls and are re-enrolled as follows:

6.1. 14 April to 22 June

6.2. 15 April to 23 June

6.3. 16 April to 24 June

6.4. 20 April to 25 June

6.5. 21 April to 26 June

6.6. 22 April to 29 June

6.7. 23 April to 30 June

6.8. 28 April to 1 July

6.9. 29 April to 2 July

6.10. 30 April to 3 July

7. All trials set down on 4 May and on dates thereafter until the end of Term 2 of 2020 shall remain enrolled.

The Civil Trial Roll Call

8. There shall be no physical civil trial roll call. Instead the following procedure shall be effective immediately:

Practice Note required

8.1. The Parties shall submit a JOINT PRACTICE note after a special pre-trial conference at which the logistics of conducting the trial are addressed. If a Plaintiff cannot obtain cooperation from a Defendant, the Plaintiff must submit its own practice note and explain why a joint practice note was impossible to be composed. Lack of co-operation by either Party shall attract punitive orders by the Court.

8.2. The practice note must reach the Secretary of the ADJP by not earlier than four days and not later than by 11h00 two Court days before the set-down date. If no practice note is timeously received, the matter shall automatically be removed. If the practice is non-compliant with the practice manual or this directive, the matter shall be automatically removed. This directive shall be strictly applied.

8.2.1. In Pretoria this practice note shall be sent by email to TLedwaba@judiciary.org.za

8.2.2. In Johannesburg this practice note shall be sent by fax to 011 335 0219 and/or email to SecretaryDJP@judiciary.org.za

8.3. The practice note must, in addition to the information required in terms of the practice manual, address these issues:

8.3.1. The names, email addresses and cell numbers of all Counsel. Counsel must hold themselves ready to receive a communication from a Judge during the two days until set down date.

Settled matters

Pretoria

8.3.2. In Pretoria, settlements shall not be made orders of Court as part of the Civil Roll Call.

8.3.3. All settled RAF matters must be referred to the Settlement Roll and no cost orders shall be made. The settlement agreement must be accompanied by the deed of settlement and the joint memorandum of settlement. The orders will be transmitted by email to the Parties by the Judges allocated to the matters.

8.3.4. All non-RAF matters that are settled can be forwarded to JHefer@judiciary.org.za and must include the settlement agreement, a draft order and a practice note. The order will be transmitted by e-mail to the Parties.

8.3.5. In respect of any other matters which have become settled, and in which it is necessary to adduce evidence, e.g. to establish quantum of damages, the relevant evidence must be contained in an affidavit and annexed together with a draft order in word format, to the practice note. Any submissions that Counsel believes are necessary to advance must be contained in the practice note. If the Judge deems it necessary, Counsel shall be contacted to procure further submissions. These matters can also be emailed to JHefer@judiciary.org.za. The order will be transmitted by email to the Parties.

Johannesburg

8.3.6. In Johannesburg, in respect of “y” matters, a statement must be made that the matter is settled, or settlement negotiations are ongoing, and the matter is therefore to be removed from the roll so that the Plaintiff can apply to enrol the matter in the Settlements and Consent Orders Court. Settlements shall not be made orders of Court as part of the roll call and no costs orders shall be made.

8.3.7. In respect of matters “C” “D’ and “P” and “F” that are settled, the practice note must be accompanied by the deed of settlement and a draft order in word format. An order in respect thereof, shall be made and transmitted by email to the Parties.

8.3.8. In respect of any matter which has become settled, and in which it is necessary to adduce evidence:

8.3.8.1. e.g., to establish a quantum of damages, the relevant evidence must be contained in an affidavit and annexed, together with a draft order in word format, to the practice note. Any submission that Counsel believes are necessary to advance must be contained in the practice note. If the Judge deems it necessary, Counsel shall be contacted to procure further submissions.

8.3.8.2. In settled divorce matters, the directives set out in paragraphs 54 – 70 of this directive shall apply.

8.3.9. An order in respect thereof shall be made and transmitted by email to the Parties.

Matters ready to go to trial

8.3.10. All matters in which the Parties are ready and wish to proceed to trial the Parties must indicate in the practice note:

8.3.10.1. what arrangements they have put in place to facilitate the hosting of a teleconference for the disposal of the matter.

8.3.10.2. what evidence can be adduced on affidavit.

8.3.10.3. to what extent a physical hearing is unavoidable.

8.3.11. The Judge allocated to deal with the matter shall communicate via email, or otherwise, with the Counsel and, having regard to the arrangements the Parties have made or are capable of making, exercise a discretion as to how the matter is to be disposed of and shall give ad hoc directives. Counsel must keep themselves available to be contacted. Such directives, without limiting the scope of the discretion being exercised, may include:

8.3.11.1. The admission of evidence remotely using video conferencing techniques;

8.3.11.2. A physical Court hearing for all or part of the evidence;

8.3.11.3. Admitting evidence by affidavit;

8.3.11.4. Any other procedure or technique that may afford an elimination or limitation of the risk of physical proximity among the people involved.

Matters not ripe to go to trial

8.4. No matter of any kind will be stood down until later in the day. Where matters are not ready for trial they shall be removed from the roll. In matters other than “Y” matters, should they later become settled, they may be enrolled:

8.4.1. in Pretoria on the Settlements Roll,

8.4.2. and in Johannesburg, in the Settlements Court,

and should not be re-enrolled on the trial roll.

8.5. Where the sole controversy between the Parties is liability for costs, such question shall be reserved for decision and shall not be dealt with as part of the civil trial roll process.

8.6. The allocations shall be published by email to the professional bodies and to the Plaintiff’s attorneys at the email given in the practice note.

Matters crowded out

9. If any matters ripe for trial cannot be allocated to a Judge, the matter shall stand over until the next Court day. It will not be necessary to replicate the practice note except where the Parties no longer require a Judge to be allocated, in which case the Secretary of the ADJP shall be notified by email thereof.

Litigants in person

10. In those cases where a Party appears in person:

10.1. and goes to the Court building, that litigant shall approach the designated official at the Court building who shall render assistance to that litigant through the use of the virtual Courtroom, or otherwise assist as directed by the Judge seized with the matter. A notice to this effect that shall be posted in the foyer of the Court.

10.2. and such litigant’s contact details are known, the Secretary of the Judge to whom the matter is allocated, shall endeavour to make contact to communicate the relevant information. Where such litigant has personal access to teleconferencing facilities the necessary link may be set up accordingly, if the Judge so directs.

Removal at instance of the Parties before the due date for filing a practice note

11. If the Parties to any matter agree not to deal with the matter under these conditions, the Parties must, to enable the Civil Trials Registrar to compose the roll, at least 5 clear Court days before the trial set-down date, formally remove the matter from the roll and email a copy thereof to the Civil Trials Registrar:

11.1.   In Pretoria at: CivilTrialremovalsPTA@judiciary.org.za

11.2. In Johannesburg at: TKhumalo@judiciary.org.za No costs orders shall be made.

APPEALS

12. These directives shall apply to all appeals set down for the rest of Term 2 of 2020 until 26 June 2020 and not only for the period of the lockdown.

13. In terms of the Directive of 25 March 2020 all appeals in the week of 14 -16 April were automatically transferred to the week of 4 to 8 May 2020. That directive remains in force.

14. All appeals (including the transferred appeals) on the roll from 4 May shall remain enrolled, notwithstanding the Lockdown or extension thereof and any social distancing regulations that may remain in place thereafter.

15. All appeals set down during the term shall be disposed of without an oral hearing in open Court, and pursuant to section 19(a) of the Superior Courts Act 10 of 2013, relyonly on the heads of argument filed; subject to the following:

15.1. If both Parties agree, an appeal may be removed from the roll. There shall be no costs order.

15.2. If the Counsel for any Party wishes to supplement the papers with additional submissions, they must be made in a practice note sent by email to the presiding Judge at least two Court days before the date of the set down.

15.3. If the Counsel for any Party wishes to make oral submissions, that wish must be stated in the practice note and the broad ambit thereof be stated.

15.4. The Presiding Judge shall exercise a discretion as to the disposal of the matter and may issue ad hoc directives which may include, inter alia, one or more of these options:

15.4.1. A hearing using video conferencing techniques; where this option is chosen, the Appellant shall, unless otherwise directed by the Presiding Judge, undertake to organise the setting up of a video conference as host, and shall send a link to all Parties and Judges involved for a meeting at a time and date stipulated by the Presiding Judge.

15.4.2. After the end of the lockdown period, a physical Court hearing, if appropriate in the circumstances.

15.4.3. Any other procedure or technique that may afford an elimination or limitation of the risk of physical proximity among the people involved, including, e.g., interrogatives sent to the Parties by email or other means.

16. Any queries by any Party must be made by email only and addressed to the presiding Judge via the Judge’s Secretary and copies sent to the other Parties.

17. The Appellant remains dominus litis and is ultimately responsible for the efficient disposal of the appeal.

18. The Order and the Judgment shall be communicated to the Parties by email by the presiding Judge.

THE OPPOSED MOTION COURT

19. These directives shall apply to all opposed motions and special motions/Third Court motions set down for the rest of Term 2 of 2020 until 26 June 2020 and not only for the period of the lockdown or any extension thereof.

20. In terms of the Directive of 25 March 2020 all opposed motions in the week of 14 -16 April 2020 were automatically transferred to the week of 4 to 8 May 2020. That directive remains in force.

21. All opposed motions (including the transferred opposed motions) on the roll from 4 May onwards shall remain enrolled, notwithstanding the Lockdown or extension thereof, and any social distancing regulations that may be imposed thereafter.

22. Only matters that have been uploaded on CaseLines shall be heard. All non-compliant matters shall automatically be removed from the roll.

23. The Judge to whom a matter is allocated shall, not later than five Court days before the week in which the matter is set down, notify the Parties that he or she is seized with the matter and all further communication about the matter shall be directly, by email only to the email address stipulated by that Judge.

24. All opposed motions set down during the term shall be disposed as follows:

24.1. If both Parties agree, an opposed motion may be removed from the roll. There shall be no costs order.

24.2. The Parties shall endeavour to agree about whether the matter may be disposed of without oral argument; if agreed, Counsel for any Party who wishes to supplement the papers with additional written submissions must do so in a practice note sent by email to the Judge by not later than the Friday before the week in which the matter is set down

24.3. If no agreement is reached about forgoing oral argument, that must be communicated to the Judge in a practice note sent by email, not later than noon on the Friday before the week in which the matter is set down, and a hearing shall take place as directed

by the Judge seized with the matter, which may include one or more of the following options:

24.3.1. A hearing using video conferencing techniques may be convened; where this option is chosen, the Applicant shall undertake to organise the setting up of a video conference as host, and shall send a link to all Parties and Judges involved at a time and date stipulated by the allocated Judge.

24.3.2. A physical Court hearing, if the circumstances so require.

24.3.3. Any other procedure or technique that may afford an elimination or limitation of the risk of physical proximity among the people involved.

25. Any queries by any Party must be made by email only and addressed to the Presiding Judge via the Judge’s Secretary and copies sent to the other Parties.

26. In those cases where a Party appears in person:

26.1. that litigant shall approach the designated official at the Court building who shall render assistance to that litigant through the use of the virtual Courtroom. A notice to this effect that shall be posted in the foyer of the Court.

26.2. or, where such a litigant’s contact details are known, the Secretary of the Judge shall endeavour to make contact to communicate the relevant information. Where such litigant has personal access to teleconferencing facilities a link may be set up accordingly, if the Judge so directs.

27. The Applicant remains dominus litis and is ultimately responsible for the efficient disposal of the appeal. Where the Applicant is unrepresented, the Respondent shall assume the responsibility.

28. The Order and the Judgment shall be communicated to the Parties by email by the allocated Judge.

THE UNOPPOSED MOTION COURT

29. These directives apply to all unopposed matters set down in Term 2 of 2020, including and after the lockdown period.

30. The transfers of the unopposed matters originally set down on dates between 27 March and 16 April 2020 to new dates between 28 April and 14 May 2020 remain in force. Of these new dates, only 28 and 29 April are within the current extended lockdown period. The transfers are as follows:

  • 30 March to 28 April
  • 31 March to 29 April
  • 1 April to 30 April
  • 2 April to 4 may
  • 3 April to 5 May
  • 6 April to 5 May
  • 7 April to 6 May
  • 8 April to 7 May
  • 9 April to 11 May
  • 14 April to 12 May
  • 15 April to 13 May
  • 16 April to 14 May

31. Only matters uploaded to CaseLines shall be heard. If a matter is not uploaded onto CaseLines because it is impossible to do so, the papers may be transmitted by e mail (with a satisfactory explanation) to the allocated Judge, failing which it shall be removed from the roll and no costs order shall be made. The Judge shall exercise a discretion whether or not to hear a matter not uploaded on CaseLines.

32. All matters shall remain on the roll (as revised) and shall, at the discretion of the Judge, be disposed of as deemed appropriate to the circumstances.

33. The manner of disposal shall be as the follows:

33.1. If an Applicant wishes to contribute any written submissions about the unopposed matter, such written contribution should be included with a practice note in the CaseLines uploaded bundle in a separate and clearly distinguished file or be sent by email.

33.2. If an Applicant takes the view that an oral hearing is necessary, that view must be stated in a practice note and uploaded on CaseLines in a separate and clearly marked

file or sent by email, whereupon the Judge shall issue an ad hoc detective as to the holding of a video conference.

33.3. The practice note must give an email address and cell number of the Counsel moving the matter to enable the Judge to make contact about an oral hearing by video conference or otherwise, and also to facilitate the prospects of a Judge having a query that might need to be addressed to the Counsel for input.

33.4. In respect Rules Nisi in which the return date falls within the lockdown period and has been enrolled on the Unopposed Court Roll, the rule shall be extended to a date after the lockdown period; if the matter has not been enrolled on the Unopposed Court Roll, it may be enrolled in the Urgent Court in order that the rule be extended to a date after the lockdown period.

33.5. A Respondent who, despite being late to do so, wishes to oppose the granting of an order, must communicate that fact by email to the allocated Judge and to the Applicant and otherwise comply with this directive.

33.6. A Respondent who appears in person and who goes to the Court building shall make his or her presence and intention known to the Registrar, and a notice to this effect shall be placed on the Foyer notices board, indicating the Court Official who is to be approached. Counsel or attorney for an Applicant must at once when it becomes known that there is opposition, regardless of its merits, communicate that fact to the allocated Judge.

33.7. The customary draft order (including Counsel’s email address and cell number) in word format must be presented among the documents uploaded to CaseLines or transmitted by email.

33.8. The Judge shall either refuse the Order, or grant it in part or whole.

33.9. Hard copies of the signed orders shall be created by the Judge and one copy shall be retained by the Judge, and another copy sent to the Registrar.

33.10. A third copy of the signed Order shall be transmitted by email to the Applicant’s Counsel.

JUDICIAL CASE MANAGEMENT MEETINGS (PRETORIA)

CASE CONFERENCES COURT (JOHANNESBURG)

34. These directives apply to all matters for the rest of Term 2 of 2020.

35. All matters which in terms of the Directive of 25 March 2020 were automatically transferred to new dates shall retain the new dates stipulated therein. The transfers are as follows:

  • 30 March to 28 April
  • 31 March to 29 April
  • 1 April to 30 April
  • 2 April to 4 May
  • 3 April to 5 May
  • 6 April to 5 May
  • 7 April to 6 May
  • 8 April to 7 May
  • 9 April to 11 May
  • 14 April to 12 May
  • 15 April to 13 May
  • 16 April to 14 May

36. The name and email address of the Judge allocated to hear specific cases shall be published by the Registrar. Thereafter, all communication between the Parties and the Judges shall take place by email or as otherwise directed by that Judge.

37. Upon receipt of the files, whether in physical form or on CaseLines, the Judge who is allocated to hear the matters shall exercise a discretion as to the manner in which the matters shall be dealt with, which may include one or more of the following options:

37.1. Publish a schedule of times during the day at intervals as determined at the Judge’s discretion, at which a tele-conference shall be convened; in which case, the Plaintiff shall be responsible to set up a tele-conference meeting on zoom for the stipulated time, host it, and send a link to the Judge and the Defendant.

37.2. Publish a list of times at which the Judge proposes to convene a video conference which the Judge shall host and shall send a link to the email addresses of the Counsel for each Party. Counsel must hold themselves ready to join such meetings at the stipulated time or as soon thereafter as the meeting may be convened.

37.3. After the period of Lockdown has ended, and subject to any regulations or Ministerial directions which inhibit free movement of persons, where appropriate, direct that the matters shall be heard in a physical Court room, in which case the matters may be staggered throughout the day to reduce exposure to physical contact among people.

37.4. Any other procedure that, at the discretion of the Judge, is deemed appropriate.

38. The Plaintiff remains dominus litis and is responsible for ensuring the efficient disposal of the matter.

CONSENT ORDERS/ SETTLEMENT COURT

In both Pretoria and in Johannesburg

39. These directives apply for the rest of Term 2 of 2020.

40. The transfers of matters originally set down on dates between the 27 March and 16 April 2020 to new dates between 28 April and 14 May 2020 remain in force. Of these new dates, only 28 and 29 April are within the current lockdown period. The transfers are as follows:

  • 30 March to 28 April
  • 31 March to 29 April
  • 1 April to 30 April
  • 2 April to 4 may
  • 6 April to 5 May
  • 7 April to 6 May
  • 8 April to 7 May
  • 9 April to 11 May
  • 14 April to 12 May
  • 15 April to 13 May
  • 16 April to 14 May

41. Matters set down in this Court shall be dealt with in the identical fashion to the Judicial Case Management Meetings/Case Management Conferences Court under the conditions described above.

In Johannesburg only

42. In addition to all “Y” matters which must be removed from the civil roll in terms of the Directive of July 2019, all other categories of matters, “C” “F” “P” and “D”, that become settled before that set down date must, also, in terms of this directive:

42.1. be removed from the trial roll and set down for disposal in the Settlements Court;

42.2. and any such matter that is removed from the civil trial roll for unreadiness on that set down date (as described in paragraph 8.4 above,) and where subsequent thereto the matter becomes settled, the matter shall be enrolled in the settlements Court for disposal.

INTERLOCUTORY COURT

43. These directives apply to all matters for the rest of Term 2 of 2020.

44. All such matters should be uploaded on CaseLines and only where not possible to do so, in addition to hard copies, the Applicant must email the full set of papers to the allocated Judge.

45. In terms of the Directive of 25 March 2020 the interlocutory matters set down between 27 March and 16 April 2020 were removed and the Parties were directed to apply to set them down anew from 28 April 2020 on dates allocated by the Registrar. That directive remains in force. The transfers are as follows:

  • 30 March to 28 April
  • 31 March to 29 April
  • 1 April to 30 April
  • 2 April to 4 may
  • 6 April to 5 May
  • 7 April to 6 May
  • 8 April to 7 May
  • 9 April to 11 May
  • 14 April to 12 May
  • 15 April to 13 May

Pretoria:

46. All matters on the Interlocutory Court Roll shall be dealt with as part of the Unopposed Roll under the conditions described above.

Johannesburg:

47. All matters on the Interlocutory Court Roll shall be dealt with in the identical procedure to the Unopposed Roll in the Special Interlocutory Court.

APPLICATIONS FOR LEAVE TO APPEAL

48. All applications for leave to appeal shall be initiated by an email to the Registrar and copied to the Presiding Judge. The emails to the Registrar shall be sent to:

48.1.   Pretoria: Ltapta@judiciary.org.za

48.2.   Johannesburg: CThomas@judiciary.org.za

49. The Presiding Judge shall exercise a discretion about an appropriate mode of hearing to address the application.

BAIL APPEALS

50. A bail appeal shall, after consultation with the Director of Public Prosecutions, be initiated by email to the Registrar:

50.1.   In Pretoria: BBhana@judiciary.org.za

50.2.   In Johannesburg: SiNkosi@judiciary.org.za

51. The Director of Public Prosecutions shall liaise with the Registrar and the ADJP concerning the allocation of a Judge to hear the matter.

52. The allocated Judge shall exercise a discretion about an appropriate mode of hearing to address the application.

DIVORCES IN PRETORIA AND IN JOHANNESBURG

53. These directives apply for the rest of Term 2 of 2020 and regulate the hearing of unopposed divorces after the lockdown period has ended.

Pretoria

54. Divorces in Pretoria shall continue to be dealt with in the Unopposed Motion Court under the conditions described above.

Johannesburg

55. Divorces in Johannesburg shall continue to be dealt with on Fridays in the Divorce Court.

56. Paragraph 12 of the directive of 25 March transferred unopposed divorces in Johannesburg originally set down on 27 March, 3 April and 17 April to Friday 24 April 2020. That directive is revoked as the litigants shall be unable to lawfully travel to the Court building on that date.

57. The divorce matters are hereby automatically transferred to the dates as set out:

57.1.   27 March to 8 May

57.2.   3 April to 15 May

57.3.   17 April to 22 May

57.4.   24 April to 20 May

Mode of hearings of unopposed Divorces in Pretoria and in Johannesburg

58. There are three categories of unopposed divorce matters, and the roll shall, as far as possible, be clearly demarcated:

58.1. Matters not involving minor children.

58.2. Matter involving minor children.

58.3. Matters in which the Party is unrepresented.

Category No 1:

59. All matters that do not involve minor children must be dealt with by adducing evidence on affidavit and no Party shall testify in person, save where the Judge orders otherwise.

60. A practice note must be submitted with the set down notice.

61. The practice note must include:

61.1 submissions, if any, by Counsel for the Party,

61.2 a request, if any, to make oral submissions,

61.3 an affidavit setting out the relevant evidence,

61.4 a certified copy of the marriage certificate with an affidavit from Counsel stating that the original was examined and it is a true copy,

61.5 and a draft order in word format which must contain the name, email and cellphone details of Counsel.

Where filing the practice note with the set-down is not possible, the practice note may be submitted by email at any time before or on the date of set down.

62. Counsel must keep themselves available to be contacted on the date of set down by email or cell phone.

63. The matters shall be disposed of at the discretion of the allocated Judge, in respect of which ad hoc directives may be issued, which may include:

63.1 Disposal without an oral hearing;

63.2 Disposal during a video conference which either the Party or the Judge may host;

63.3 Disposal at a physical traditional hearing.

Category 2:

64. All matters that do involve minor children must be dealt with by adducing evidence on affidavit and no Party shall testify in person, save where the Judge orders otherwise.

65. A practice note must be submitted with the set down notice.

66. The practice note must include:

66.1 submissions, if any, by Counsel for the Party;

66.2 a request, if any, to make oral submissions;

66.3 an affidavit setting out the relevant evidence, which must address in detail the arrangements contemplated for the minor children and the views of the Family Advocate, if any;

66.4 a certified copy of the settlement agreement;

66.5 a copy of the marriage certificate with an affidavit from Counsel stating that the original was examined and it is a true copy;

66.6 and a draft order in word format containing the name, email and cell details of Counsel.

Where filing the practice note with the set-down is not possible, the practice note may be submitted at any time before or on the date of set down.

67. Counsel must keep themselves available to be contacted on the date of set down by email or cell phone.

68. The matters shall be disposed of at the discretion of the allocated Judge, in respect of which ad hoc directives may be issued, which may include:

68.1 Disposal without an oral hearing;

68.2 Disposal during a video conference which either the Party or the Judge may host;

68.3 Disposal at a physical traditional hearing.

Category 3:

69. Unopposed divorces in which the Party appears in person shall be disposed of at the discretion of the allocated Judge, in respect of which ad hoc directives may be issued, which may include:

69.1 Disposal during a video conference;

69.2 Disposal at a physical traditional hearing.

70. In those cases where an unrepresented Party:

70.1. goes to the Court building, that Party shall approach the designated official at the Court building who shall render assistance to that litigant through the use of the virtual Courtroom. A notice to this effect shall be posted in the foyer of the Court.

70.2. can be contacted because the relevant contact details are known, the Secretary of the Judge shall endeavour to make contact to communicate the relevant information concerning the manner of the hearing.

70.3. has personal access to teleconferencing facilities an appropriate link may be set up accordingly, as the Judge directs.

URGENT COURT

71. The provisions of paragraphs 3 to 5 of the Directive of 25 March 2020 continue to apply, save the date mentioned in paragraph 3.9 in the affidavit to be furnished by Counsel, shall be the first Tuesday after the lockdown period ends.

72. These provisions shall continue to apply for the rest of Term 2 of 2020 and the July recess period.

GENERAL CONDITIONS UNDER WHICH PARTIES MAY ENTER THE COURT BUILDING

WHERE A PHYSICAL HEARING HAS BEEN DIRECTED BY A JUDGE

73. Counsel and litigants who are required to travel to the Court building must comply where applicable with any further restrictions that may be imposed after 30 April 2020. If travel is not lawful, the matters shall be removed from the roll automatically.

74. Anyone seeking access into the Court buildings must submit to compulsory screening, must wear a face mask and must adhere to applicable social distancing rules.

75. Only the Parties, the Counsel and the Attorneys shall enter the Court building.

76. Any Party who does not wish to have the matter dealt with under the conditions described above must remove the matter from the roll.

77. Orders of the Court shall be prepared in hard copy, signed, a copy retained by the Judge, a copy sent to the Registrar, and a copy communicated to the Parties by email.

D MLAMBO
JUDGE PRESIDENT OF THE GAUTENG DIVISION OF THE HIGH COURT OF SOUTH AFRICA

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