JAA

Because the JAA will help you to: 

  • run a better practice, 
  • better serve your clients and protect and advance their rights, 
  • protect the rule of law and human rights, and 
  • serve justice. 

You would, no doubt, as an attorney in practice, have come up against numerous logistical and operational difficulties in your dealings with the government offices and officials, with clumsy or badly drafted laws, and with a general apathy and lack of resources in the main offices that you rely on to do your job (such as the courts, Master’s offices, Deeds offices, Family Advocates’ Offices, etc.). You may be less affected if you work more for commercial clients than if you work for individuals, but you would still have suffered the indignities of having to deal with SARS and government. 

The JAA’s job is to fix, or help as best we can, to alleviate problems that attorneys (and ultimately their clients, and justice) suffer from. 

We work with every stakeholder in the industry (including the courts, Masters’ offices, Deeds offices, SARS, NPA, local municipalities, COGTA, SALGA, the Ministry of Justice, Probono.org and other probono institutions, universities, human rights organizations such as NADEL, and other industry bodies such as the GAA, PAA, LPC, and LSSA, just to mention a few). 

For instance, at present time we are involved heavily in: 

  • Shortening the length of awaiting trial dates; 
  • Resolving lost file issues and sorting out filing systems in government offices that are hopeless; 
  • Moving our court systems towards a paperless system; 
  • Initiating and participating in pilot projects such as the e-court order project; 
  • Crime/safety issues at the various courts; 
  • Probono representation for indigent persons; 
  • Quality and affordable continued legal education for practitioners; 
  • Mentoring and protecting the rights of candidates; and 
  • Lobbying to change legislation or otherwise deal with issues that threatens attorneys’ livelihoods (such as the Debt Collection Bill, RABS, and Proxismart). 
  • We have regular on-going liaisons with all industry role players to address new, and maintain the resolution of, older issues. We have networks of contacts that we can reach out to at any time to assist with any of these logistical issues. 

We do this without any remuneration. No trips abroad or to conferences. No fancy lunches at lodges for indabas. We do it every day, in our courts and government offices, by spending countless hours meeting and strategizing with government officials and implementing projects to make the lives of attorneys and their clients better. 

We do this for the love of the law, for justice, and to better serve those who need the protection of the law the most. We are always available (day and night) and are indiscriminate in our efforts to assist our members, no matter how large or small the problem, your practice or the time/cost element involved in dealing with it. 

Contact us if you need help with any of the issues above, as well as other mundane issues such as: 

  • There is no toilet paper in the bathrooms at court/government office; 
  • The lifts in the courts don’t work; 
  • You have been a victim of crime at our courts; 
  • You have difficulty with a particular lost file/obtaining access to archives, etc – we need specific detail here in order to help; 
  • You can’t get a trial date; 
  • You need general advice on how to deal with a logistical issue at a government office or the latest practice directives; 
  • You can’t get something you need from the Master, or Deeds Office; 
  • There are issues in the management/operations of any government office that prevent you from doing your job; 
  • You want mentorship or to be part of a greater network of attorneys in practice who reach out to each other for help when they need it. 

What we do helps to serve justice and uphold human rights in the most fundamental way. It’s unremunerated and time consuming, but it is critical to maintaining our human rights based on the Constitution, the rule of law, access to justice and courts and a functioning and independent judiciary. Without this, democracy and our culture of human rights will collapse. 

And what else do we offer our members? 

  • Our members are kept in the loop with the latest developments in a weekly e-newsletter; 
  • Members will have full access to our website, offering the latest practice directives and court rolls plus other relevant information which can be downloaded; 
  • Members will be invited to the AGM’s, seminars and webinars hosted by the JAA or others in conjunction with the JAA; 
  • We are working on posting our webinar and useful videos to our website for our members; 
  • Members of the JAA automatically become members of the Gauteng Attorneys Association at no extra fee. 
  • Members can open a firm facilities account, offering the use of all our services at our offices on a 30-day account. 

WhatsApp Groups 

We have also instituted a WhatsApp group for the Masters Office as well as the Deeds office to assist members in keeping up to day as to what is happening at these locations. Should you wish to be added to the group, please send your name and cell number to viv@jaa.org.za with subject line “Add to Masters WA Group” or “Add to Deeds WA Group”.

Court specific current lock-down status

We have added a “hot button” to our website, where we continuously update members as to which offices are closed, etc as we get the information. Simply visit www.jaa.org.za and click on the banner on the home page to get the status update. 

Who is eligible to be a member? 

Any legal practitioner who has business in the courts in the greater Johannesburg area. The membership is a life member, irrespective of which firm you work for. If you change firms or your contact details, let us know and we will update your records. 

Cost?
The membership fee is R690.00 per annum, including VAT for the 2021/22 financial year which begins in June each year. 

What about candidate attorneys 

The membership fee for candidate attorneys is waived until such time as they qualify. The JAA allow 3 candidate attorneys per member, per firm free of charge. However, if the principal of the firm does not wish to be a member, the CA may still join at the standard joining fee. 

What if i no longer want to be a member? 

Simply send a written communication to the JAA via email or registered post. You will be liable for the annual fee up to and including the year of resignation. 

Why wait? 

Log onto our website www.jaa.org.za to do an online application, or 

email viv@jaa.org.za for an application form.

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