Starting a business? We discuss the partnership option

Starting a business? We discuss the partnership option

Episode 3 - In our last article in the series “Choosing the right legal entity for your business (link)” we looked at the sole proprietorship [link] option.  Let’s move on to the partnership option, where a group of business owners replaces the sole owner/trader. Firstly, what exactly is a partnership? We talk loosely about our “partners” in various contexts, but it is important to understand how the law views the concept in a strictly business situation.  In broad terms a partnership is an association of between 2 to 20 people/companies/trusts who agree to pool resources (such as money, property, services, skills etc…
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Neighbours behaving badly: Nip illegal building in the bud!

Neighbours behaving badly: Nip illegal building in the bud!

Bad neighbours don’t just impinge on your enjoyment of your property; they can also cause serious harm to its value.  So if you notice illegal building activity next door, move quickly to nip the problem in the bud. Your hand in this regard has just been strengthened. An important new decision by the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) in BBS International Link CC v Readam South Africa (Pty) Ltd (279/2015) [2016] ZASCA 58 confirms that you aren’t limited to trying to compel the municipality to enforce its own building and zoning laws – you can apply for demolition directly. Demolition ordered…
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Baby Boomers: At What Age Must You Retire?

Baby Boomers: At What Age Must You Retire?

Employers need to be particularly on their guard for cases in which a workplace dismissal is automatically unfair.  Our courts take a particularly dim view of discrimination cases falling into this category. Age discrimination is one such instance, and an employer faced with such a claim can defend it only by proving (the onus is on the employer) that the employee has reached “the normal or agreed retirement age for persons employed in that capacity”. With “Baby Boomers” (people born between 1946 and 1964) now retiring in record numbers, expect to see a spike in disputes and litigation over retirement…
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Copyright in cyberspace: New guidelines for online publishers

Copyright in cyberspace: New guidelines for online publishers

The high profile Moneyweb (Pty) Limited v Media 24 Limited High Court judgment is significant for all online publishers.  In a nutshell, Fin 24 was ordered to pay damages to Moneyweb for copyright infringement in respect of one article, but the Court found against Moneyweb in regard to six other articles and ordered it to pay 70% of Fin 24’s legal costs. Both sides in the litigation have claimed victory but the important message for us all is this - original creative works are protected by copyright even when posted online. Strong protections – a summary Let’s start with our…
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Property Agreements – an alteration which would sink your sale!

Property Agreements – an alteration which would sink your sale!

Although in our law most verbal contracts are binding, property sale agreements are an exception.   They must be in writing and signed by the parties to be valid, the reason being that it greatly reduces the risk of confusion or dispute as to what the buyer and seller have actually agreed. In practice of course, the buyer’s initial offer is usually in the form of a written document which only becomes an agreement if and when signed in acceptance by the seller.  And often that initial offer sparks negotiation, usually over price or other important terms, with the result that…
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