About To Marry? Don't Forget Your ANC and the 3 Types of Marriage

"And she's got brains enough for two, which is the exact quantity the girl who marries you will need" (P.G. Wodehouse)

Wedding Season being once again well and truly upon us, the chances are high that even if you yourself aren't contemplating marriage you know of someone who is. If so, please think of forwarding this article to them.

Planning and preparing for your wedding is an exciting and busy time, and your 'To Do' list will be a long one. Plus you will be stressed for time, and distracted, and it will be tempting to put the "boring" legal bits and pieces low down on your list.

Don't do that! A visit to your lawyer is an essential, not a "nice to have" to be squashed in between "Book Airbnb for Auntie Jo" and "Bath dog". First on the agenda for your legal consultation will be an ANC...

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Employees on Probation: Can You Dismiss for Poor Performance?

"... arbitrators should hesitate to interfere with employer's decisions on whether probationary employees have attained the required performance standard, or with the standards themselves" (extract from judgment below)

Our laws allow employers to hire new employees on a probationary basis, and doing so can give both parties time to assess how good the "fit" actually is and whether the employee should become a permanent one.

Employers must however avoid falling into the trap of thinking that they can dismiss a probationary employee at will; on the contrary they must ensure both "substantive" and "procedural" fairness at all stages of the process.

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Landlord vs Tenant: When Can You Cut Electricity or Change the Locks?

"Spoliation is the wrongful deprivation of another's right of possession. The aim of spoliation is to prevent self-help. It seeks to prevent people from taking the law into their own hands ... The cause for possession is irrelevant - that is why a thief is protected ... The fact that possession is wrongful or illegal is irrelevant, as that would go to the merits of the dispute" (extracts from a 2012 Supreme Court of Appeal decision)

As a landlord in dispute with your tenant you may well be tempted to avoid the delay and cost of litigation by taking your own eviction or enforcement action.

Bad idea. No matter how good your overall case may be (or how good you may think it is), taking the law into your own hands automatically puts you in the wrong.

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It Pays to Report Crime! First Offender's 20 Years in Prison Confirmed for R4.9m Fraud

"The scourge of white collar crime, especially fraud, is currently the order of the day in our country. Fraud is a cancer that is crippling our country from the core and takes away from the poorest of the poor" (extract from judgment below)

It is tempting sometimes to think that the high levels of criminal activity plaguing us at every level of our society are here to stay and that it is pointless reporting crime when you fall victim to it.

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Dementia and Incapacity: What is a Power of Attorney and is it Forever?

"The number of cases of dementia is estimated to almost triple by 2050" (World Health Organisation)

Although the actual prevalence per capita of dementia is reportedly on the decline, aging populations ensure that it is becoming more and more of a problem in society - for older people, their families and caregivers. 

If someone close to you (normally an aging parent or relative) needs - or may in the future need - assistance with their financial affairs, your first thought will probably be a power of attorney by which the "principal" appoints an "agent" to act for him/her, either for a particular purpose (a 'special power of attorney') or generally (a 'general power of attorney'). You may well have the same thought if you yourself are approaching old age and starting to plan for your future needs.

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