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Do not trust a trustee (without the necessary authority)
16 October 2019 Corporate & Commercial

Do not trust a trustee (without the necessary authority)

In Goldex 16 (Pty) Ltd v Capper NO and Others (543/2018) (2019) ZASCA 105 (4 September 2019), the court considered whether a trustee who signed a sale agreement on behalf of a trust without the necessary authority could be held personally liable for payment of the purchase price.

Have mercy on the taxpayer! The write-off of tax debt in Australia and a South African perspective
11 October 2019 Tax & Exchange Control

Have mercy on the taxpayer! The write-off of tax debt in Australia and a South African perspective

The write-off of tax debts is not unique to the South African tax regime. In the recent case of Burns and Commissioner of Taxation (Taxation) [2019] AATA 3860 (24 September 2019), heard in the Administrative Appeals Tribunal of Australia (Tribunal), the decision by the Commissioner of Taxation (Commissioner) to deny the release of the taxpayer from his taxation liability was reviewed.

Careful how you cancel – a strict approach to following cancellation clauses in construction contracts
9 October 2019 Dispute Resolution

Careful how you cancel – a strict approach to following cancellation clauses in construction contracts

The temptation to terminate a construction contract out of pure frustration can be difficult to resist. It all starts with the project falling behind schedule, an aggrieved party granting an extension to complete the works, only for the extension to be insufficient for the contractor to meet the new deadlines and the project costs increasing day by day. The case of Hodgkinson v K2011104122 (Pty) Ltd and another [2019] 2 All SA 754 (WCC) (Hodgkinson) is a caution to parties employing contractors to pause and carefully consider the cancellation clause contained in the construction contract before acting on the impulse to cancel.

Let’s kill all the lawyers
9 October 2019 Dispute Resolution

Let’s kill all the lawyers

If the title of this article appealed to you, perhaps you’ve recently had to pay an attorney’s invoice. Or you had to pay someone else’s attorney’s invoice? You might be thinking that Dick the Butcher, in Shakespeare’s Henry VI, had a point: “Let’s kill all the lawyers!” Fortunately for us attorneys – and as an aside – it has been reported that this line is often misinterpreted. Dick the Butcher was a follower of the rebel Jack Cade (who led a popular revolt in 1450 against the English government), and thought that if he disturbed law and order, he could become king. Shakespeare was suggesting that attorneys and judges help to maintain law and order! Phew!

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Termination of negotiations: Do you have a claim if the proposed deal goes south?
2 October 2019 Dispute Resolution

Termination of negotiations: Do you have a claim if the proposed deal goes south?

Parties to commercial transaction negotiations can be falsely naïve in their early management of the process, with the misguided belief that everything will work out positively, resulting in one or both parties failing to take business decisions in anticipation of a deal being struck. This article considers what legal remedies, if any, are available to an aggrieved party against the party withdrawing from negotiations, and what precautions may be taken to ensure the other party continues to negotiate in good faith.

Section 44 of the Companies Act and Post Acquisition Finance
2 October 2019 Corporate & Commercial

Section 44 of the Companies Act and Post Acquisition Finance

Often the provisions of s44 of the Companies Act, No 71 of 2008 (Act) are overlooked when companies who previously obtained the requisite s44 financial assistance shareholder approval (in connection with the acquisition of shares of the company or of a related company) decide to vary the terms of such financial assistance post the relevant share acquisition.

The provision of safe transport by employers to prevent gender-based violence – considering the tax consequences
26 September 2019 Tax & Exchange Control

The provision of safe transport by employers to prevent gender-based violence – considering the tax consequences

Many South Africans have taken a stand against the surge of violent crimes perpetrated by men against women over recent weeks and have expressed their outrage through protest action. This outcry against gender-based violence in South Africa has been echoed worldwide, with many nations standing in solidarity with the women of South Africa.

Be careful retailers, you may run out of fuel: Section 12B of the Petroleum Products Act may not be your saving grace
25 September 2019 Dispute Resolution

Be careful retailers, you may run out of fuel: Section 12B of the Petroleum Products Act may not be your saving grace

In terms of s12B of the Petroleum Products Act 120 of 1977 (Act), the Controller of Petroleum Products (Controller) may on request by a licensed retailer alleging an unfair or unreasonable contractual practice by a licensed wholesaler, or vice versa, require, by notice in writing to the parties concerned, that the parties submit the matter to arbitration.

Interpreting a reinstatement clause in an insurance contract: Insurers should act quickly and wisely, or pay the price
25 September 2019 Dispute Resolution

Interpreting a reinstatement clause in an insurance contract: Insurers should act quickly and wisely, or pay the price

An insurance company recently suffered the consequences of its wrongful repudiation of a claim in terms of the reinstatement provisions of an insurance policy, in the Western Cape High Court case of Watson and another v Renasa Insurance Company Limited [2019] 2 All SA 280. After a fire at the plaintiff’s place of business destroyed machinery insured by the defendant insurance company, the defendant repudiated the insurance claim, based on its assertion that the plaintiff’s arson had caused the fire. Both the High Court and the Supreme Court of Appeal sided with the plaintiff, finding that the insurer was obliged to indemnify the insured property. The matter then came before the High Court in respect of the quantum of the plaintiff’s claim.

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Chris Charter comments on the Massmart complaint
26 February 2015 Competition

Chris Charter comments on the Massmart complaint

Massmart has launched a complaint with the Competition Commission targeting Pick n Pay, Spar and Shoprite in a bid to end lease exclusivity clauses. Chris Charter, Head of our Competition practice comments.

Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr continues to support the Come Together Home
10 October 2014 Pro Bono & Human Rights

Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr continues to support the Come Together Home

Come Together is a key project in Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr's Corporate Social Responsibility portfolio. We have seen the Come Together project flourish over the years. We are proud to be part of this worthy initiative, which has and will continue to make a significant difference to the lives of a number of children and adults in the Sebokeng community.

Nicholas Preston comments on Shakes Mashaba and Isegund Gordan having a contract at the same time.
6 August 2014 Employment

Nicholas Preston comments on Shakes Mashaba and Isegund Gordan having a contract at the same time.

Newly appointed Bafana Bafana coach Shakes Mashaba arrives back in South Africa after a tour of Mali as the official coach of the senior national team. Isegund Gordan’s contract with SAFA runs until the end of the month, but a employment lawyer says this is perfectly legal that both men can be contracted for the same position at the same time. Director, Nicholas Preston gives comment.

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