23 Aug

How Can The Legal Profession Tackle Corruption?

When Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng spoke at this year’s SADC’s Lawyers Association conference in Cape Town he mentioned how lawyers and other legal professionals are ultimately responsible for weeding out corruption in government, public and private sectors. He also mentioned how lawyers and judges should refrain from taking part in a corrupt system of rule, an unfortunate common occurrence in South Africa’s municipal governance. But what Chief Justice Mogoeng did not mention was how the legal profession will go about making this nation-wide change.

Legal Strategies To End State Corruption 

  • By getting legal professionals involved in the auditing of government spending more often, instead of leaving the process largely internalised within municipal and national departments is key to ending corruption. Many countries post lawyers within government departments to audit on an ad hoc basis, rather than systematically auditing departments at a set time and date in the year.
  • International corruption conventions should be arranged to facilitate dialogue between governments that both suffer or have successfully tackled corruption. By integrating said dialogue between governments and international legal organisations, such as the SADC’s Lawyer Association, actual, tangible policy may be drafted to eliminate corruption.
  • When it comes to tackling corruption within the courts, legal professionals are very limited when it comes to using certain evidence against officials who may otherwise be found guilty of corruption. Corrupt officials are often one step ahead of legal professionals in their use of technology such as mobile devices, messaging platforms and the like, knowing full-well that some evidence cannot effectively be used in court. Much of this, as well as a considerable amount, of red tape needs to be eliminated if lawyers and public protectors are to have any success against corrupt politicians and officials.

Although there is much room for improvement, Ivan Zartz Attorneys supports the sentiments of the Chief Justice, and we all look forward to a transparent and well-governed future in South Africa.

Contact Ivan Zartz Attorneys today for more legal news and views.

27 Jun

Overstepping Family Law Rules

Family Law cases are largely dependent on outcomes determined in Family Court’s proceedings. However, parents sometimes overstep predetermined grounds and rules regarding cases in order to achieve their own desired outcome. Doing this can be incriminating, and will result in the parent losing their case or worse.

Bugging Case

A recent court case in Family Court found a father guilty of bugging his daughter’s school uniform in order to find out important information discussed between the daughter, the mother as well as social workers. The cheap recording device was sewn into the girl’s clothing and recordings were saved throughout numerous days in which meetings would take place.

Additionally, the father and his new partner would place recording devices in rooms where the daughter and social workers would have meetings. This was all done in order for the father to find out crucial information regarding the daughter’s expected change of residence and guardianship from the father to the mother.

Overstepping The Law

This is a classic case of the father breaching the daughter’s privacy, and is not only illegal but the finding of which certainly contributed to the father losing his battle in court. The judge believed that by bugging his daughter’s clothing, the father has significantly damaged his relationship with his child, and such a situation warranted a change of guardianship.

In any event, such a breach of law and an invasion of privacy may mean an outcome worse than a change in the outcome of the court case. It may also mean that the person responsible for any legal breach will have to pay fines, damages and can even face imprisonment.

It is important that with all cases regarding Family Law that parties take into consideration the advice given to them by legal professionals. A Family Law attorney will be able to provide you with all the necessary information concerning one’s actions and responsibilities from the onset of all legal cases.

If you require Family Law attorney in South Africa, make sure that you contact Ivan Zartz Attorneys as soon  as possible.

08 Jun

What Is A Sale In Execution?

An individual’s credit history sometimes catches up with them. The occurrence is no more prolific than in the property market, and many a homeowner in South Africa has had their home taken away from them because they have failed to pay their home loan or bond. When this occurs, the practice is called ‘a sale in execution’.

Sale In Execution Of An Unpaid Home Loan

When the new property owner has not paid the bond or home loan, efforts will be made to enter some sort of financial agreement with the homeowner, often in the presence of legal representatives. After multiple instances of notification, it falls on the bank to sell the house on the market through the sheriff of the court. This can only be done through a court order, a cumulation of decisions made in court, and justified by the financial capacity (or lack thereof) of the individual.

The sale of the house is usually done by an auctioneer, and the auction itself would have been advertised in both the Government Gazette as well as print media. The price at which the house is sold by the auctioneer cannot be denied by the bank, as the property is strictly not their own. Often houses are sold well below their market value due to the nature of the sale.

Legal Opposition To Sale In Execution

There have been recent cases whereby individuals and organisations have challenged the sale in execution. A recent case involved the Lawyers for Human Rights (LHR) where they challenged the courts, believing that the sale of a particular individual’s home far below the market value, as an infringement on the individual’s rights. Some properties are sold for less than the amount owed by the homeowner towards the bank loan or bond. This often means they have to pay additional fees or risk being ‘blacklisted’.

If you require more information on issues regarding property law, sectional title law or debt collection, make sure you contact Ivan Zartz Attorneys today.


25 May

The Best Interest Of The Child: The ISIS Case

The best interests of the child are the primary considerations with regards to all actions concerning children, whether it be in the courts of law , private welfare and social welfare of the child. This standard is maintained across the board and in all countries that are susceptible to international law and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

The ISIS Case

A recent situation occurred in England that perfectly highlights the government’s responsibility, as well as their right, to make decisions regarding the custody of the child and to do so in the best interest of the child. A mother of three from Leicester UK decided to move to an ISIS-controlled region within Syria with her children, obviously to pursue a lifestyle invested in religious ideology and warfare. Her arrest at the airport (on the suspicion of religious radicalisation and affiliation with ISIS) provided evidence of her interest in having her children grow up in the war-afflicted country and under ISIS law.

Child custody services appealed to the court and its judge that he come to a written agreement regarding the lives of the children, and what their futures entailed. The court came to the decision that it was in the best interest of the children to be removed from the custody of their mother, and placed in the care of their maternal grandparents. The woman now faces criminal charges as well as international charges for her affiliation with jihadists.

The Best Interest Of The Child

The police protection order, submitted by airport security, was enforced, and the children were then immediately placed into foster care before being handed to their grandparents. This event highlights the state’s right to ensure that ‘the best interest of the child’ precedent is upheld, and that the courts, as well as the law, should do everything in its power to enforce change in the best interest of the child.

For more news regarding family law, commercial law and debt collection, make sure you keep visiting Ivan Zartz Attorneys Articles page!

Contact Ivan Zartz Attorneys today for the best debt collection and family law legal assistance in the country!

25 May

International Arbitration Bill: What It Means For Arbitration In SA

The International Arbitration Bill has been passed on to parliament, and will most likely be approved. This means that we may be subject to new International Arbitration Law within the next few years. What does this mean for South Africa, and how does it in any way affect  mediation in the legal sense?

The South African courts have gone a long way in promoting mediation as an alternative form of dispute resolution between parties, especially regarding commercial interests. Arbitration allows parties to formally settle disputes in private (where the arbitration does not include the state), saving businesses a lot of money that would otherwise be spent on legal fees. Additionally, arbitration reduces the pressure that courts and legal professionals experience in alleviating the vast number of commercial dispute resolution cases.

Old Arbitral Procedures

International arbitral procedures, alternatively, has always been an issue within the profession. This is because cases of international arbitration fell within the limits of the outdated Arbitration Act, No 42 of 1965. With the new International Arbitration Act in place, international arbitral procedures will be distinguished from domestic arbitration, and will be governed by as per UNCITRAL Model Law set out in the New York Convention.

New Arbitral Procedures

Although the force of law will still be maintained by executive powers within South Africa, arbitral procedures between international parties will be governed by the laws outlined in the UNCITRAL Conciliation Rules, essentially freeing up the local judiciary and offering commercial parties to settle disputes on their own terms. With the Act in place, foreign arbitral awards will not require government authorization with regards to their enforcement. Additionally, arbitral awards will need to be made an order of the court where parties are acting in good faith. They are not required to make an order of the court if the subject matter is not arbitrable in South Africa.

The new Act, some may say, has been a long time coming, and will certainly make South Africa an inviting location for international dispute resolution.

If you require the services of a dispute resolution attorney or a legal professional with experience in mediation and arbitral procedures, then make sure you contact Ivan Zartz Attorneys as soon as possible.

For more information regarding family law dispute resolution take a look at our dispute resolution page here.