The Cape Law Society is the statutory body responsible for the administration of the Attorneys' Profession in the Western, Eastern and Northern Cape.
The amendment to the High Court and Magistrates Court tariffs, as gazetted on 23 January 2015 takes effect on 24 February 2015.
Members are referred to the Media announcement with respect to Judicial Vacancies. Closing date for applications is 13 February 2015.
Members are reminded that the Uniform Rules (with amendments) were adopted and approved by members at the Society’s 2014 Annual General Meeting. The Rules have been referred to the Judges Presidents in the Northern, Western and Eastern Cape Provinces for consideration. Should approval be received from the Judges Presidents, these will in turn be referred to the Honourable Chief Justice for further consideration.
Members will be kept apprised of progress.
Examination Results for the September 2014 Conveyancing Examinations are now available.
Registration Forms for the 2015 Examinations are now available. Kindly ensure that when applying to write any one of the Professional examinations, the relevant registration form is completed along with submission of the relevant fee and any necessary documentary proof insofar as it relates to being entitled to write the examinations.
The Society applies strict adherence to the CLOSING dates, thus no late applications will be accepted.
Notarial Practice Examination Results for the October 2014 examinations now available.
Members are advised that the Legal Practice Act, No 28 of 2014 was published in Government Gazette no 38022 of 22 September 2014.
The aim of the Act is “To provide a legislative framework for the transformation and restructuring of the legal profession in line with constitutional imperatives so as to facilitate and enhance an independent legal profession that broadly reflects the diversity and demographics of the Republic; to provide for the establishment, powers and functions of a single South African Legal Practice Council and Provincial Councils in order to regulate the affairs of legal practitioners and to set norms and standards; to provide for the admission and enrolment of legal practitioners; to regulate the professional conduct of legal practitioners so as to ensure accountable conduct; to provide for the establishment of an Office of a Legal Services Ombud and for the appointment, powers and functions of a Legal Services Ombud; to provide for a Legal Practitioners’ Fidelity Fund and a Board of Control for the Fidelity Fund; to provide for the establishment, powers and functions of a National Forum on the Legal Profession; and to provide for matters connected therewith.”
The Legal Practice will take effect as follows:
“(2) Chapter 10 comes into operation on a date fixed by the President by proclamation in the Gazette
(3) Chapter 2 comes into operation three years after the date of commencement of Chapter 10 or on any earlier date fixed by the President by proclamation in the Gazette.
(4) The remaining provisions of this Act come into operation on a date, after the commencement of Chapter 2, fixed by the President by proclamation in the Gazette.”
Members will be kept abreast of developments in relation to the coming into effect of Chapter 10 of the Act.
Please be advised that new CONVEYANCING GUIDELINES, take effect on 15 September 2014.
A vacancy for a Professional Assistant exists within the Societys Administration Department..
Members are referred to the update issued by FIC, dealing with the following aspects:
• Registration with FIC;
• Reporting to FIC;
• Cash Threshold Reporting (Section 28);
• Terrorist Property Reporting (Section 28A);
• Suspicious And Unusual Transaction Reporting (Section 29).
Members who have not as yet registered with the FIC are urged to do so as soon as possible. In terms of section 43B of the Financial Intelligence Centre Act, Act No. 38 of 2001, as amended (the FIC Act), all attorneys are obligated to register with the Centre
Members are further reminded the new revised guide for Registered Auditors, which is to be applied when conducting the Trust Audits of Attorneys (as issued by the Independent Regulatory Board “IRBA” for Auditors during February 2014) brings about certain changes to the trust audit reporting requirements; amongst which includes confirmation that registration with FIC has been complied with.
The Society offers assistance with the on-line registration process, particularly to sole practitioners. In this regard, please liaise with Thergesari Roberts (Thergesari@capelawsoc.law.za)
Vacancy for a Business Development Official exists at the Cape Law Society.
As per Notice No. 571 published in the Government Gazette No. 37848, dated 18 July 2014, the date of “1 August 2014” has been substituted with the date of “1 December 2014” as the date on which the Court-Annexed Mediation Rules would come into operation.
The Society has received Notice from the Chief Registrar at the Western Cape High Court regarding changes to the process in which files are uplifted from aforementioned Court. The following advices have been received from the Registrar:
• Parties will not be able to uplift files on the same day as the request, unless the matter is on the roll or on good cause is shown to the Registrar of the relevant section or the Chief Registrar;
• Rule 62(7) of the High Court Rules, which reads as follows:
“Any party to a cause, and any person having a personal interest therein with leave of the registrar on good cause shown, may at his office, examine and make copies of all documents in such cause” has been enforced at the Western Cape High Court, with effect from 26 August 2014.
• In order to facilitate compliance with the Rule, a revised upliftment form has been drawn up [this form is subject to change]
Members are encouraged to participate in the FIRST INTERVIEW SCHEME.
The FIRST INTERVIEW SCHEME is essentially a scheme whereby legal advice/consultation offered during the first half hour is done free of charge. Consultation going beyond the half hour or further work that may emanate from the first half hour of consultation would be as per the normal applicable tariffs.
The scheme will work on a rotational basis; members of the public will be referred to the relevant specialist attorney based in the town in which the client works or resides.
The first free half hour consultation will not constitute pro bono work, furthermore participation is voluntary.
Members wishing to participate are encouraged to complete the on-line registration form (click on READ MORE to access form), alternatively to forward an email to email@example.com indicating your interest.
AMENDMENT OF RULES REGULATING THE CONDUCT OF THE
PROCEEDINGS OF THE MAGISTRATES COURTS OF SOUTH AFRICA
"The Rules Board for Courts of Law has, under section 6 of the Rules Board for
Courts of Law Act, 1985 (Act No. 107 of 1985), with the approval of the Minister
of Justice and Constitutional Development, made the rules in the Schedule"
The monetary jurisdiction of the Regional Courts has been amended with the effective dated thereof being 1 JUNE 2014
The monetary jurisdiction of the District Courts has been amended with the effective dated thereof being 1 JUNE 2014.
A revised guide for Registered Auditors to be applied when conducting the Trust Audits of Attorneys was issued by the Independent Regulatory Board “IRBA” for Auditors during February 2014 and replaces the previous SAICA guide – “Guidance for Auditors: The Auditors of Attorneys’ Trust Accounts in terms of the Attorneys Act, No 53 of 1979, and applicable Rules of the Provincial Law “Societies”. The ‘SAICA guide” was essentially withdrawn by the IRBA.
This guide for Registered Auditors: Engagements on Attorneys Trust Accounts (this Guide) was prepared by a Task Group of the Committee for Auditing Standards (CFAS) of the IRBA, which comprised of auditors and representatives of the Provincial Law Societies, the Law Society of South Africa and the Attorneys Fidelity Fund. This Guide was approved by IRBA for issue on 28 February 2014.
It is brought to Members’ attention that the new guide brings about certain changes to the trust audit reporting requirements; in particular that Attorneys are required to prepare an Annual Statement on their Trust Account(s), which contains compliance representations to the Cape Law Society, together with information extracted from their accounting records. The information sought in the Attorneys Annual Statement on Trust Account(s) was previously dealt with in the Accountant’s report. The requirement is thus that the Attorney’s Annual Statement on the Trust Account must accompany the Auditor’s report and would form the basis conducting the Attorneys trust audit.
The change is meant to highlight the responsibility of both the attorney and registered auditor. The attorney is responsible for ensuring that the trust accounts are maintained in compliance with the Act and Rules. The auditor is responsible for expressing a reasonable assurance opinion on the compliance of the Attorneys trust accounts, in all material respects, with the Act and Rules, based on the audit procedures performed, and to report their audit finding(s) and/or opinion(s) on the Attorney’s Annual Statement on the Trust Accounts.
The Cape Law Society Council, at its March 2014 meeting, resolved that the current and proposed new format audit reports would be accepted by the Society, but that the new format audit report only be accepted if the Attorneys Annual Statement of Account was attached to the auditor’s report on submission thereof to the Society.
The changes to the reports should be discussed with your auditor who will be able to provide further information and guidance in this regard.
A vacancy for a Professional Assistant within the Societys Professional Affairs Department, presently exists.
Members are advised of the Name Change in relation to the High Court - Cape Town..
Practice Directive issued by the Judge President, Eastern Cape Division.