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So far pietervdm has created 277 blog entries.

Suing a Foreign Company

Jurisdiction refers to the ability of a particular court to hear a matter which has been brought before it and to grant the appropriate relief in respect thereof. Generally, South African courts enjoy jurisdiction over persons (natural and juristic), resident or domiciled in the particular court’s geographical area or in respect of causes of action [...]

Is it a Sign(ature)?

When an agreement contains a non-variation clause, it is settled law that the agreement cannot be altered by oral agreement between the parties.  From the locus classicus this mechanism has become known as the Shiffren Straight Jacket and was later confirmed in the case of Brisley v Drotsky 2002 (4) SA 1 (SCA). In the [...]

Broad application of Section 197 of the Labour Relations Act

Section 197 of the Labour Relations Act No. 99 of 1995 (“the Labour Relations Act”) provides that if a transfer of a business takes place - the new employer is automatically substituted in the place of the old employer in respect of all contracts of employment in existence immediately before the date of transfer; all [...]

Unlawful Levying of Interest and Contractual Implications

A warning regarding charging interest on deferred payments – the recent SCA judgment in Vesagie NO & others v Erwee NO & another (734/2013) [2014] ZASCA 121 (19 September 2014) confirms that the sale contract will be void ab initio if the seller is not a registered credit provider in terms of the National Credit [...]

Attendance of international event

Pieter van der Merwe attended the Globalaw European meeting in Madrid Spain. earlier in March. His report was that it is evident from the discussions with colleagues within the group that it seems that the global economy improving. Further many European based businesses are exploring migrating into emerging and new markets which will be promising [...]

Signature of an agreement: how important is it?

Aside from various types of legal documents where signature of the parties is required by law (such as an agreement to dispose of a real right in land as contemplated in the Alienation of Land Act, 1981) there is a misconception in commerce that an ordinary agreement that is documented in writing must always be [...]

3 Grounds for Fair Dismissal

According to South African law there are only three grounds for the fair dismissal of an employee, namely the conduct of the employee, the capacity of the employee and the operational requirements of the employer's business. 1.Conduct of the employee In order for the dismissal to be regarded as fair: The employee must have contravened [...]

Yes, I have read the terms and conditions

English stand-up comedian Eddie Izzard once said “No one in the universe has read the terms and conditions”. He was of course referring to the terms and conditions of iTunes which we all blindly accept in the “ordinary course of our social business”. He went on further to say “anything could be in the terms [...]

Our firm’s perspective on M&A activity

There is something magical about putting commercial transactions together and implementing them. It feeds into the primary instinct of people to constantly strive for growth and advancement. Unfortunately, the outcome is not always win-win and sometimes one is faced with a win-lose situation. Before I provide my view on M&A activity, it is important to [...]

To Litigate or to Arbitrate? You Should Ask that Question.

There are likely few ‘high stakes’ business men and women and (hopefully) fewer commercial attorneys who won’t be familiar with an arbitration clause. Typically, such a clause will oblige the parties to an agreement to refer any dispute arising from the agreement, to be determined by an arbitration tribunal in accordance with certain rules which [...]

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