The Law Society of South Africa (LSSA) is saddened at the untimely passing of Pietermaritzburg attorney and former LSSA Co-Chairperson, Julian von Klemperer, on 9 January 2018 at the age of 71.
ZIMBABWEANS practising law across the globe have formed an association with a view to sponsor underprivileged, but brilliant youths aspiring to join the legal profession. Zimbabwe Lawyers International (ZLI), founded by a London-based lawyer, Mrs Caroline Mugova-Pfupajena, officially launched its Zimbabwe Chapter at a cocktail held in Harare on Friday.
Read more at The Herald...
This past year saw significant failures in South Africa’s technology and telecommunications sectors. The government’s failed spectrum policy was a recurring theme this year, with the Minister of Telecommunications and the mobile operators battling over spectrum and the planned WOAN. The biggest tech failures in South Africa of 2017 are listed below.
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The Lawyer’s Daily, spoke to firms with strong technology practices about what their predictions were for the upcoming year in legal tech.
Read more at The Lawyer's Daily...
Two startups from Southern Africa won top honours at The Hague Institute for Innovation of Law’s annual Innovating Justice Forum in December, when they were declared the winner and runner-up of the global Innovating Justice Challenge 2017.
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...
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.
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.
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.
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.
‘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 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.
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...
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...
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.
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.
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).
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 creates legally binding visual contracts for vulnerable people, which reduces contract inequality, improves understanding and aligns mutual expectations.
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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:
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 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 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.
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...
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.
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...
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.
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...
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.
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...
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.