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Most recent Employment Law Articles posted

Ex-manager seeks R23m over race bias claims

Associated Motor Holdings, a subsidiary of Imperial Holdings, is being sued for more than R23m by a former group financial manager who claims she was discriminated against because she is a black woman. According to a Business Day report, Adila Chowan claims she was dismissed from the company in 2015 after enduring insults directed at her by Imperial Group CEO Mark Lamberti, the respondent in the matter being heard in the Gauteng High Court.

St John's dismisses 'racist' teacher

A geography teacher at St John’s College in Johannesburg – found guilty on three serious charges‚ including racism – has been fired‚ says a TimesLIVE report. This followed a visit to the school last week by Gauteng MEC for Education Panyaza Lesufi‚ who reportedly gave the school an ultimatum until 1pm on Friday to sack the teacher. Welcoming the decision‚ Lesufi said the educator had left the school with immediate effect.

CCMA rules drivers are Uber employees

Taxi app company Uber’s business model is in the spotlight after the CCMA ruled its drivers are employees of the company, Rapport reports. CCMA Commissioner Winnie Everett held that the CCMA has jurisdiction over disputes raised by Uber drivers and that the company’s drivers are fully protected by labour legislation.

Exemption on earnings outside SA to be scrapped

The Treasury has proposed to remove the foreign employment income tax exemption for South African residents working abroad from March 2019. Treasury deputy DG Ismail Momoniat said the aim was to make sure that the tax system was fair to all and that people did not exploit offshore tax havens.

25% garnishee salary cap

The government plans to introduce a salary cap on the percentage that can be ‘attached’ by creditors using emolument attachment orders to collect debt, notes a BusinessLIVE report. The Courts of Law Amendment Bill proposes that no more than 25% of a debtor's salary can be attached, no matter how many attachment orders they may have against them.

Ex-members sue union over settlement payment shortfall

Former members of the SA Transport and Allied Workers Union (Satawu) have turned to the Gauteng High Court (Pretoria) to force the organisation to pay the R1m it owes them following a settlement relating to an unfair retrenchment Labour Court case that began in 2010 and ended last year. The Star reports Daniel Mokwatedi and James Tshabalala noted that the union had enlisted attorneys to represent them, and were successful in the matter.

SA liable for all nuke accident costs

The nuclear agreement with Russia has far-reaching consequences for the Budget, the Western Cape High Court heard on Friday, as it places all liability for a nuclear accident on SA, while indemnifying Russia completely. A GroundUp report says David Unterhalter SC, appearing for Earthlife Africa and the Southern African Faith Communities’ Environmental Institute, which are challenging government’s nuclear procurement process, said liability for nuclear accidents fell on SA even if it occurred outside the country.

Family returns to farm following ConCourt ruling

Ladismith farmworker Karel Snyders (54) and his family have moved back into their home on the Voorbaat farm after the Constitutional Court overturned a 2015 eviction order obtained by owner Louisa de Jager, says a Cape Argus report. Karel Swart of the Commercial Stevedoring Agricultural and Allied Workers Union (CSAAWU) said the court had sent a clear message that ‘farmworkers are human’ and that they are ‘not just an extension of farm machinery and property’ to be ‘dumped at will’.

Judge rules restraint of trade policy too broad

Believing that junior hairstylist Joseph Vinciguerra (21) had breached a restraint of trade agreement‚ Carlton Hair International went to the Labour Court in Johannesburg asking for an urgent interdict to stop him working within 10km of its Hyde Park store for a year. But, says a TimesLIVE report, Judge Hilary Rabkin-Naicker sent the salon group packing‚ saying it was ‘unreasonable and against public policy’ to be so heavy-handed with a junior employee who qualified only six months earlier.‘

Race quotas ruled unlawful by SCA

The SCA has found a racial quota policy implemented for the appointment of liquidators to be unlawful and invalid. It ruled on Friday that an appeal against a finding of its unconstitutionality be ‘dismissed with costs,’ upholding the High Court’s finding of the policy as ‘unconstitutional and irrational’ as well as ‘unlawful and invalid’, notes a News24 report.

Top court ruling condemns workplace racism

A former SARS employee‚ fired in 2007 by then SARS Commissioner Pravin Gordhan for using racist and derogatory language‚ has had the reversal of his dismissal overturned by the Constitutional Court. In what media reports describe as a 'scathing' judgment handed down by Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng yesterday‚ Jacobus Kruger was labelled a racist for using the k-word at work in August 2007. The ruling has inplications for workplaces across the country, notes Legalbrief.

Top court to rule on SARS racism case

The Constitutional Court is to rule tomorrow on whether Minister of Finance Pravin Gordhan – then Commissioner of SARS – had powers to fire a white employee for calling his supervisor a ‘kaffir’, says a report on the IoL site. According to evidence in the internal disciplinary hearing, the k-word comment was made after Jacobus Johannes Kruger had a heated argument with his supervisor, Amos Mboweni.

Logistics company gets restraint of trade interdict

A Durban-based logistics company has been granted an interdict against a former manager who had allegedly been stealing clients for a competitor he was now working for, says a Daily News report. He had apparently quit the company citing family difficulties and that he intended leaving this field of work to relocate. KZN High Court (Durban) Judge Esther Steyn granted an order restraining the former employee from being involved in anything seen as being in competition with the business conducted by Avcres Transport, for six months.

SABC 8 challenge Parliament decisions in top court

The so-called "SABC 8" are asking the Constitutional Court to order Parliament to probe its own decisions around recent events at the public broadcaster, according to a News24 report. The eight journalists, fired and then rehired by the SABC in September following a lengthy Labour Court battle, want the National Assembly to institute an inquiry into the various issues plaguing the broadcaster, including their firings.

Domestic lodges discrimination case

A R4 000-a-month domestic worker is taking her multimillionaire former boss to court for gender discrimination, according to a Sunday Times report. Nathan Lazarus, founder and chair of the Ram courier company, has already paid Nellie van Zyl R12 000 for unfair dismissal. But now the 56-year-old mother of six is taking him to the Equality Court, saying she suffered post-traumatic stress and depression after a confrontation with Lazarus’ son Michael.

Garnishee Orders: A 7-Point Practical Guide to New Rules for Lenders, Debtors and Employer

On 13 September 2016, the Constitutional Court handed down judgment in a matter concerning an application for confirmation of an order of invalidity made by the Western Cape Division of the High Court and an appeal against certain parts of that order that declared certain specified words in section 65J(2) of the Magistrates’ Courts Act (Act) inconsistent with the Constitution and invalid to the extent that they fail to provide for judicial oversight over the issuing of an emoluments attachment order against a judgment debtor.

Hair salon wins restraint-of-trade case

An East London hair salon has succeeded in convincing the court that eight of its former employees have breached the restraint clause in their contracts, says a Daily Dispatch report. How Do You Want It (Pty) Ltd – trading as Dreadlocks Studio One – turned to the Eastern Cape High Court (East London) after director Luvo Sihlali filed papers accusing the eight of poaching his clients.

Court overturns R11.6m RAF award

The Western Cape High Court has overturned an R11.6m award for loss of earnings after a hit-and-run accident, according to a report in The Times. It agreed with the Road Accident Fund that the award should be scrapped, saying Glenn Bee (65) had not lost earnings because the company he ran with his brother had not stopped paying him his half of the profits.

Challenge to separation deal fails in top court

A senior human resources executive who has spent years in the courts waging a legal challenge to a separation agreement he signed with his employer‚ has now lost in the Constitutional Court, says a TimesLIVE report. The court handed down judgment yesterday in an application for leave to appeal from the Labour Appeal Court concerning the constitutional validity of a mutual separation agreement providing for a waiver of Muyiwa Gbenga-Oluwatoye's right of access to courts.

Appeal for unfair dismissal upheld

The fight for an apology and compensation for workers at Robertson Abattoir will continue after the Labour Appeal Court yesterday upheld an appeal for unfair dismissal, says a Cape Times report. In 2010, a total of 39 employees at the abattoir alleged they were dismissed after they refused to comply with a demand that they slaughter 850 sheep a day, up from 600 a day.

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