The Sale and Purchase Agreement (SPA) has often been described as the battleground of M&A disputes – this is where a deal's blueprint is found, and the devil is in the detail. This article highlights how a clearly worded SPA is crucial to avoiding M&A disputes, particularly in relation to purchase price adjustments and other areas that have financial implications for the parties.
In Lewis Group Ltd v Woollam and Others 2017 (2) SA 547 (WCC) the court states, "...the duty of company directors to act honestly and in accordance with their fiduciary duties to the company is owed not only to the company, but also to the shareholders personally". It is an unfortunate formulation. Not only does the reasoning behind the statement not add up, but at best a fiduciary duty towards shareholders finds limited application only.
Part 1: Foundational technology
In the late 2000s, Bitcoin was counter-culture; revolution; anarchy; cypher-punk. It was anti-government, anti-control and commonly understood as the currency of the dark web and shady cyber-criminal organisations. It was, in short, a dangerous adventure.
According to the roll of the Supreme Court of Appeal, Friday 8 September was set aside for an "Intellectual Property Law Peer Training Session", to be presented by the former Deputy President, Justice Harms. The week before, Justice Wallis presented a "Shipping Law Peer Training Session". As far as I am aware, these sessions are a recent introduction to the Supreme Court of Appeal calendar.
Mozambique: importance of filing a Declaration of Intent to Use
A peculiarity of the trade mark system in Mozambique is that the owner of a registration needs to file a Declaration of Intent to Use (DIU) every five years – there is a six-month grace period. No actual use needs to be established, the trade mark owner simply needs to declare an intention. If the owner fails to file a DIU the registration remains valid but it is unenforceable and it remains so until a DIU (this time with proof of actual use) is filed. Owners must note that a registration for which no DIU has been filed will be cancelled if a third party applies for cancellation. Oddly in Mozambique there is no provision for cancellation for non-use, simply for failure to submit a DIU.
There is cause for celebration for new property owners in light of the recent Constitutional Court judgment in Jordaan and Others v City of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality and Others  ZACC 31. However, new owners were not the only ones who stood to lose in the application and interpretation of s118(3) of the Local Government: Municipal Systems Act (32 of 2000). The question thus arises: where do mortgagees stand in respect of the section?
Lawyer convicted of offer to launder cash based on TV series
A criminal defence lawyer who had fallen on hard times offered to set up a sham corporation to launder drug proceeds. He said he could launder the money for a drug dealer through the sham corporation, as he had seen on a TV series Breaking Bad, or through an account, by providing fictitious legal services. Unfortunately for him, the drug dealer was a confidential informant posing as a drug dealer and he told the police about the attorney's offer. The attorney was convicted of two counts of money laundering and one count of attempted money laundering. He was sentenced to 44 months in prison. - Debra Cassens Weiss August 7
The price of digital currency, bitcoin, has gone up 350% this year. The Chicago Tribune comments that in comparison the stock market is only up 10% but adds a rider for those who might be tempted to invest everything "The graph of bitcoin's staggering rise looks a lot like previous market manias, including the dotcom bubble. Bitcoin may well endure as a legitimate currency, but astronomical gains don't continue forever."
By far the most interesting development in the past 12 months has been, to my mind, the advance in technology. Equally fascinating is the pace at which technology is being adopted and a growing recognition that it is likely to be a case of "adapt or die".
Do you unwillingly cringe, smile sympathetically, guiltily experience schadenfreude or genuinely commiserate whenever you see a new group of candidate attorneys reporting for duty? We have all been in their positions and appreciate the steep learning curve ahead of them. Fresh out of university or previous work experience, candidate attorneys are often surprised when experiencing the rigours of working life in a law firm for the first time. We demand cerebral application of legal theory, an ability to grasp complex issues the first time and pragmatism. We expect people to work the hours that we have become accustomed to, notwithstanding the fact that during the preceding four years, they may not have risen from bed for any class before 10h00. What can possibly go wrong?
I studied a BA followed by a LLB at Rhodes University in Grahamstown. Rhodes prepared its law graduates thoroughly in terms of our legal knowledge and understanding, and, better yet, on how to expand that legal knowledge and understanding. However, the greatest challenge that the majority of its graduates face when leaving university is moving from the academic/classroom setting to an environment that requires practical application of that academic knowledge.
The desire to be a lawyer is shared by millions across the world, all with hopes of carving out a successful legal career. This article covers topics that are key to a law student's success and which provide insight into the legal profession through the eyes of a candidate attorney.