Litigation

/Litigation

Your Written Contract Should Cover Everything – No Oral Evidence Allowed!

Here’s another warning from our courts to make sure that all your contracts are properly drawn to reflect both accurately and fully what you have agreed to. The problem with leaving anything out – or agreeing to something that isn’t then fully recorded in your contract – is a principle in our law known as “the rule of parol evidence”.  A recent SCA (Supreme Court of Appeal) decision illustrates the rule in action, and the facts will resonate with the many farmers,

How Courts Sort Fact from Fiction – A Tale of Jags, Deception and Damages

“Truth will out” (Shakespeare) You are wondering whether you can win in court against an opponent where your two versions of what happened are totally at odds with each other.  How will a judge decide where the truth lies? It’s an important question because even though you know you are telling the truth, the court must base its decision on the evidence put before it. In other words, whether or not Shakespeare’s “Truth will out” will apply to your court case is going to

How to Stop Vital Evidence Being Destroyed

“Surprise the enemy” (Sun Tzu in ‘Art of War’) You suspect that someone you are suing (or about to sue) will destroy or hide vital evidence in their possession. Perhaps by shredding documents or deleting electronic records supporting your case, or perhaps by spiriting away computer hard drives full of incriminating information. You fear that if they get away with it your case will be dead, or at least compromised. Fortunately our law has a strong and quick remedy for you –

Business Rescue: Are Your Suretyships Enforceable? A R5.5m Lesson for Directors and Creditors

“Some people use one-half their ingenuity to get into debt, and the other half to avoid paying it” (George Prentice, newspaper editor and author) You are owed a lot of money by a company that goes into business rescue. The business rescue plan provides for creditors like you to accept a dividend of only a few cents in the Rand in settlement of your debt. You stand to lose heavily. But perhaps there’s hope yet – a director with assets has signed

Your Website of the Month: Coming Soon – More Courts Offering Mediation Options

“Agree, for the law is costly” (wise old proverb) The cost, delay and risk of contested litigation sometimes makes it sensible to rather try to resolve a dispute with mediation. Ask your lawyer for advice on whether your dispute is a suitable one, and if so be aware that in addition to the option of existing “private” mediation, you can refer a dispute to “court-annexed” mediation at selected magistrate’s courts around the country, either before or during a trial.  The list of

Accidentally Paid the Wrong Person? Lessons From a R862k Banking App Error

“There’s no such thing as a free lunch” (Economist Milton Friedman) In these days of online banking and electronic payment, it’s not uncommon to find out to your horror that you have made a payment to someone in error, either to the wrong recipient or in an incorrect amount. If that happens to you and the recipient refuses to pay you back, what can you do about it? The other side of the coin of course is whether the recipient of an