Legal Articles and Guides
Personal Injury Law
A Potchefstroom doctor who is being probed after several patients died under his care has failed in an urgent application to have his suspension lifted, says a report in The Star. One of his alleged victims was a 12-month-old girl who suffered burns when a cup of boiling water fell on her.
Former Cabinet spokesperson Mzwanele Manyi is due to receive R55 000 in damages after he won his defamation lawsuit against #FeesMustFall activist Mcebo Dlamini. According to a report on the IoL site, Dlamini apparently called Manyi a ‘lame, lazy, horny stinky old donkey’ on a group WhatsApp message.
Soaring payouts for medical negligence claims against the state pose such a threat to health-care provision that government is proposing a ‘new pay as you go’ system to compensate victims. A Financial Mail report notes that by the end of the 2016-2017 fiscal year, government faced contingent liabilities of R56.1bn. That equates to almost a third of the R170.9bn consolidated health budget for 2016-2017.
Eight years after she was raped in a 16-hour gang attack on Port Elizabeth’s Kings Beach, Andy Kawa’s civil case against the police has finally started in the Eastern Cape High Court (Port Elizabeth). The Herald reports former Humewood police station commander Brigadier Ronald Koll, the Safety and Security Minister as well as investigating officers Matabataba Madubedube and Adine Solomon, were cited in Kawa’s R6m suit which was filed in 2013.
Former Blue Bulls prop Morné Mellett (28) has issued summons for R45m against the Blue Bulls Company and a team doctor, Herman Rossouw, for his loss of income following an injury. According to Rapport, Mellett was injured in a Super Rugby match in July 2015.
A Bloemfontein pharmacy, Preller Plein Apteek, has been ordered to pay damages to a woman who was left with chronic pain and epilepsy after following a diet plan offered by the pharmacy‚ which involved injections containing fat burners and Vitamin B.
The Eastern Cape High Court has ruled that owner of a Bullmastiff crossbreed was liable for the damages suffered by a boy (5) who lived next door and was bitten by the dog while he sat on a wall, says a report in The Mercury. Charl Grobbelaar said he had told the child not to sit on the brick wall bordering the premises if he was not there to control his dog.
The technically bankrupt Road Accident Fund, which is propped up by a fuel levy on taxpayers, is renting office chairs at R1 666 per chair per month, notes a Sunday Times report. It says the contract for the rental of 300 chairs at almost R500 000 a month follows a bid to push through an even more audacious five-year, R60m furniture rental contract with the same company. That plan, however, did not go ahead.
The Road Accident Fund Act has been described as ‘social legislation’. Crucially, the Act’s fundamental objective is to provide protection to a wronged party who has suffered loss through the negligence or unlawful act on the part of a driver or owner of a vehicle. Prescription is a rule of law that is designed to bring finality to disputes. Consequently, prescription shuts the door on the claimant effectively disabling them to issue a claim once the time period has lapsed.
Former mineworkers and their dependents can now register their interests in the historic R5bn silicosis and TB class action settlement online. A TimesLIVE report says the new website‚ SilicosisSettlement.co.za‚ and a Facebook page‚ Silicosis Settlement, were launched this week.
The Gauteng Executive Council says it has settled the multi-million rand financial claim linked to the Life Esidimeni tragedy. Retired Deputy Chief Justice Dikgang Moseneke, who headed an arbitration hearing on the tragedy, ordered government to compensate the families of the victims – compensation that has now been paid, notes a TimesLIVE report.
Mpumalanga’s Health Department faces medical negligence claims of more than R7.6bn, of which more than 40% centre on children allegedly born with cerebral palsy. A Business Day report says this figure represents more than half of its budget allocation for the 2018-19 fiscal year, which stands at R13.3bn.
A total of 150 more families who lost loved ones in the Life Esidimeni tragedy or are related to survivors, have come forward with claims. A Times Select report says this could push the estimated R160m payout by the Gauteng provincial government to about R300m, although the new claimants are still being verified.
A Bill aimed at protecting the state from soaring medical-negligence claims, which grew an average of 45% a year from 2012-13 to 2016-17, is seen by critics as prejudicing patients by limiting their choices and forcing them to seek care from the facilities that harmed them in the first place.
The Northern Cape Department of Health is facing a R48.9m medical negligence lawsuit after a child was born with severe brain damage at Manne Dipico Hospital in Colesberg. A report on the IoL site notes that the matter is before the Northern Cape High Court. In court papers it was stated that the child’s mother, Nonceba Rozette Mbatiwe Matiso, went into labour on 17 June 2014, where she was left in the maternity ward until 20 June, without undergoing any medical check-ups.