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Does resigning with immediate effect put a stop to disciplinary proceedings?
ENSafrica, December 2017

The past year has seen a number of high-profile instances of employees resigning, allegedly to avoid disciplinary proceedings against them. This issue was dealt with in the case of Mtati v KPMG Services (Pty) Limited.The employee in this matter was informed by her employer that an investigation was being conducted into allegations of misconduct levelled against her. She then provided her employer with a letter in which she tendered her notice of resignation...

Is My Business Safe from Relationship Property Claims?
MinterEllisonRuddWatts, December 2017

 The adage, “Uncertainty is bad for business”, reflects a well-established economic theory in common use at a time of complex global events. It applies equally to the uncertainty caused by relationship breakdown and its disruptive impact on a business-owning spouse or partner (spouse) and their customers. It is important to understand that business assets can be exposed to crippling family law property claims even when held in trust...

Patent prosecution highway to advance Africa-China IP relationship
ENSafrica, December 2017

  The 41st session of the administrative council of the African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (“ARIPO”) recently took place in Lilongwe, Malawi. Several documents on the administrative aspects of the organisation were discussed at the meeting, including the proposed programme of activities for 2018, and proposals to amend some ARIPO treaties to continually keep them in line with international trends...

Changes to Law Allowing Developers to Terminate Off-Plan Sales Contracts
Afridi & Angell, December 2017

On 16 November 2017, Law No. (19) of 2017 was gazzetted which amends the procedures contained in Law No. (13) of 2008 on Interim Property Registration in Dubai. This law stipulates the procedures which developers must follow if a buyer breaches an off-plan sales contract. The new law is an important development in Dubai and will assist developers who are facing a difficult real estate market and increasing buyer default...

Black Friday: is it a trade mark?
ENSafrica, December 2017

Black Friday tends to lead to unseemly physical scuffles. But, somewhat unexpectedly, this year’s Black Friday also resulted in some interesting trade mark scuffles!Black Friday, the retail and marketing phenomenon that originated in the US before spreading to much of the world, officially happened on 24 November 2017, although many readers will have noted that this particular Friday seems to go on for the best part of a week...

To-dos at the Pre-Bidding Phase of Government Procurement Projects
LCS & Partners, December 2017

Following the requirements and qualifications of foreign bidders to participate in government procurement projects, this chapter will focus on the bidding preparations and risk analyses before moving forward in the projects. On-Site Investigations Due to factors such as Taiwan’s multivariate geological environment, it is possible that the actual conditions may differ significantly from the geological and underground data provided by the procuring entity in the tender documents...

The National Minimum Wage Bill released for public comment
ENSafrica, December 2017

On 17 November 2017, the National Minimum Wage Bill was gazetted for public comment. Given that the Bill was the subject of negotiation and agreement at the National Economic Development and Labour Council (“NEDLAC”), its progress through the legislative process is likely to be fairly smooth. The Bill envisages that it should be in force by 1 May 2018. We highlight its most important provisions below...

Romanian Government Approves Draft Law on Mining Activities
Nestor Nestor Diculescu Kingston Petersen, November 2017

The Romanian Government has recently approved a draft law on mining activities that is intended to replace the existing law, enacted in 2003. In order to be enacted, the draft law needs to pass the Parliament test, which means that it will not come into force this year. In addition, the draft can suffer many changes in the parliamentary proceeding...

Black cabs and trade marks
ENSafrica, December 2017

The trade mark laws of many countries specifically mention product shapes among the items that can enjoy trade mark protection – shape trade marks are often referred to as “3D trade marks”. Yet, registering and enforcing 3D trade marks can be very difficult, particularly in Europe. This is evident from the latest UK court decision regarding London taxis...

Legal and Economic Significance of Offshore Finance in the British Virgin Islands
O'Neal Webster, November 2017

International financial records recently stolen from two offshore services firms and 19 corporate registries maintained by governments were leaked to journalists and their details subsequently published around the world. But beyond the hype, however, we find no intelligent inferences of legal significance in the reporting. For example, the media draws attention to a United States Cabinet member's offshore financial transactions but does not allege that his shipping stake was illegal...

South Africa releases Competition Amendment Bill
ENSafrica, December 2017

On 1 December 2017, the South African Minister of Economic Development, Ebrahim Patel, published Government Notice no. 41294, which announced the release of the Competition Amendment Bill, 2017 (the “Competition Bill”) for public comment.Members of the public are invited to submit written comments on the Competition Bill to the Economic Development Department within 60 calendar days of publication of the notice (ie, by 30 January 2018)...

The New National Employment Service's Practice of Prolonging of Work Permits
Karanovic & Nikolic, November 2017

The National Employment Service changed its years-long practice regarding the extension of work permits for persons on secondment. In particular, pursuant to Article 19 of the Law on the Employment of foreigners, work permits based on secondment are obtained for a period of the duration of an agreement between the local employer - who is the service user, and a foreign employer, but no longer than for one year...

Stop using our trade mark … please … pretty please
ENSafrica, December 2017

If you have ever received a trade mark letter of demand, the chances are that you thought one or more of the following things: long, scary, legalistic, absurd, incomprehensible. It is far less likely that you thought any of these things: perfectly reasonable request, clearly explained, a tricky issue handled with charm and tact – but things may be changing. Recently, the trade mark counsel of US company TGI Fridays sent a letter of demand to a bar in Chicago called Moneygun...

Dawn Raids: Do you have a policy in place, and is it fit for purpose?
Afridi & Angell, November 2017

The term “dawn raid” refers to an unanticipated visit to commercial premises by a regulatory authority. Examples of this could include a squad of policemen entering a warehouse, a team from a financial-services regulator checking trading records at a bank, or an official from the UAE Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation entering your office to check the work permits of all employees present there (an increasingly common practice)...

What constitutes membership or shareholding of a company in Uganda?
ENSafrica, November 2017

When is one a shareholder or member of a company? This issue was recently considered by the Supreme Court of Uganda in Matthew Rukikaire v Incafex Limited, which ruled that a person who has not fully paid up their shares may be considered a member and shareholder of a company with rights to full participation in the affairs of the company to the extent allowed by the types of shares they hold...

An Important Israeli Court Decision for Dual-Listed Companies
Fischer Behar Chen Well Orion & Co., November 2017

An Important Israeli Court Decision for Dual-Listed Companies: The Liability for Breaches of Reporting Obligations by Dual-Listed Companies Is Governed by the Securities Laws of the Foreign Trading Jurisdiction On November 7, 2017 the Tel Aviv District Court (Economic Division, Judge Kabub) issued a decision in Cohen v. Tower Semiconductor Ltd. et al., C.A...

Africa Tax in Brief
ENSafrica, November 2017

ANGOLA: Introduction of transfer pricing unitA transfer pricing unit, set up as an administrative technical structure forming part of the Large Taxpayers Directorate of the General Tax Administration, was launched on 25 September 2017 and will be responsible for monitoring compliance with Angola’s transfer pricing regime introduced by Presidential Decree No.147/13 of 1 October 2013...

Development of Latin America Through Foreign Trade and Investment
Brigard & Urrutia, November 2017

Latin America’s current economic growth levels are among the world’s highest, and the region is preparing its regulations to meet new economic challenges. As such, the fostering of foreign trade and foreign direct investment (FDI) is important to increase GDP growth, create job opportunities, and improve logistics and production...

Unutilised Capital Losses – Can SARS Impose Understatement Penalties?
ENSafrica, November 2017

In terms of section 222(1) of the South African Tax Administration Act, 2011 (the “TAA”), “[i]n the event of an ‘understatement’ by a taxpayer, the taxpayer must pay, in addition to the ‘tax’ payable for the relevant tax period, the understatement penalty determined under subsection (2) unless the ‘understatement’ results from a bona fide inadvertent error” (our emphasis)...

Patterson Belknap Publishes New York Commercial Division Practice Guide
Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP, November 2017

Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP announced today the publication of its New York Commercial Division Practice Guide.  This new publication is part of Bloomberg BNA’s Litigation Practice Portfolio Series, and an excerpt is available to download at: http://on.bna.com/H1KM30gCY7v...

The Taxation Laws Amendment Bill, 2017: far-reaching changes to debt reduction rules
ENSafrica, November 2017

  The new South African Taxation Laws Amendment Bill, 2017 (the “TLAB 2017”) was released following the public consultation process for the Draft Taxation Laws Amendment Bill, 2017 (the “Draft TLAB 2017”). While some of the changes in the TLAB 2017 following submissions made on the Draft TLAB 2017 are welcome, others are problematic...

Amicorp Group: Assurance Solutions
Amicorp Services Ltd., November 2017

Amicorp Group: Assurance Solutions One of Amicorp’s core businesses is the provision of global compliance and regulatory services through its Assurance solutions platform. More than half of the top 10 global private banks, asset managers, family offices and independent financial advisors have chosen Amicorp as their preferred business partner because of our specialist knowledge and services in the regulatory and compliance field across various continents...

Relocating from South Africa? Key steps to undertake in the emigration process
ENSafrica, November 2017

There are a number of considerations when relocating to another country that involve much more than a mere physical departure and the taking up of permanent residence in a foreign country. In South Africa, an individual will continue to be regarded as a South African resident for exchange control purposes until such time as the South African Reserve Bank (the “SARB”) has provided him/her with formal emigration approval...

Remuneration for Holidays or National Mourning in Panama
Morgan & Morgan, November 2017

Most of holidays and national mourning that are covered by Article 46 of the Labor Code of the Republic of Panama are in November, December and January. In fact, they are considered as such, November 3, 5, 10 and 28; December 8 and 25; and on January 1 and 9...

Playing with fire – understanding future financial commitments
ENSafrica, November 2017

Section 66 of the South African Public Finance Management Act, 1999 (“PFMA”) places certain restrictions on the powers of national and provincial public entities, government departments and constitutional institutions (“public institutions”) in regard to specified transactions, namely borrowing, the issue of guarantees, indemnities and security, and entering into transactions that bind or may bind that public institution or the revenue fund to any other so-called future f

UAE VAT Executive Regulation Update: Free Zone Guidance
Afridi & Angell, November 2017

The UAE Ministry of Finance has announced the Executive Regulation for the Federal Decree-Law No. (8) of 2017 on Value Added Tax (UAE VAT Legislation) at a Cabinet meeting on 7 November 2017, headed by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, Ruler of Dubai. It is expected that the Executive Regulation to UAE VAT Legislation will be released this week in draft form on both the UAE Ministry of Finance’s website (www.mof.gov...

Senate Approves Trump Nominee for General Counsel of NLRB: How This Will Impact Non-Union Lawyers
Spilman Thomas & Battle, PLLC, November 2017

On November 8, 2017, the U.S. Senate confirmed Peter Robb as the new General Counsel for the National Labor Relations Board ("NLRB" or "Board"). In private practice, Robb was a noted critic of the NLRB under the Obama administration, particularly the Board's so-called quickie election rules and what he has termed the Board's narrow definition of supervisory status...

With child, without pay
ENSafrica, November 2017

In the Labour Court judgment, dated 7 November 2017, of Manyetsa v New Kleinfontein Gold Mine (Pty) Ltd, a pregnant employee claimed she was unfairly discriminated against due to the application of the maternity leave policy of her employer, a gold mining company...

Successfully Doing Business Overseas: The Case for an EU-Wide Sandbox Initiative
A&L Goodbody, November 2017

 Last month, the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) published its "Regulatory Sandbox – Lessons Learned Report". In the Report, the FCA evaluated the progress of the UK financial regulatory sandbox during its first year of operation and tentatively concluded that the initiative has so far been a success...

Huawei/Wawei, it’s all a bit confusing
ENSafrica, November 2017

In this article, we look at two recent trade mark opposition decisions. These remind us of the many issues that need to be considered when comparing trade marks. They also highlight the growing importance of Chinese brands.The first involves a case that was before the European Union IP Office (“EUIPO”). In this case, the Taiwanese company Wawei filed an EU trade mark application for Wawei for food and drink in classes 29, 30 and 32...

The International Comparative Legal Guide to: Patents 2018
SyCip Salazar Hernandez & Gatmaitan, November 2017

1. PATENT ENFORCEMENT 1.1 Before what tribunals can a patent be enforced against an infringer? Is there a choice between tribunals and what would influence a claimant’s choice? Patents are enforced against an infringer either through a civil action before the Regional Trial Court (“RTC”) or an administrative action before the Bureau of Legal Affairs (“BLA”) of the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (“IPOPHL”)...

UGG, what a legal mess!
ENSafrica, November 2017

There’s an interesting trade mark dispute under way about UGG. It touches on a range of IP issues – geographical indications, generic terms, country-of-origin brands and Chinese manufacture.Many readers will know that UGG is a sheepskin boot originating from Australia. UGG has apparently been around since the1930s, when it was created to deal with the cold winters in Australia (the Blue Hills region of New South Wales apparently can get cold)...

Business Work Visas, Two Developments that Affect Employers
Haynes and Boone, LLP, November 2017

The current Administration continues to be active in the area of immigration law and policy, and has promulgated several Executive Orders (“EO”), mostly directed to immigration enforcement and national and public security. The exception is the April 2017 Buy American, Hire American Executive Order, which extends to and impacts professional work visas...

Brexit: is it offensive?
ENSafrica, November 2017

The issue of offensive trade marks has been in the news quite a bit of late. Now, the European trade mark authorities have considered whether Brexit, the term used to describe the UK’s departure from the European Union, is a trade mark that might offend. It might seem like an unlikely trade mark, but clearly some people think that Brexit works as an indicator of commercial origin...

E&P Companies and the OCC’s Leverage Test – October 2017 Update
Haynes and Boone, LLP, November 2017

In August 2016, we reviewed publicly available data for a group of 58 E&P companies and predicted how they would fare under the leverage test that had, at the time, recently been introduced by the OCC.Based on that review, we predicted that, in 2016, over 91 percent of the companies reviewed would be non-passing credits under the OCC’s leverage test. The average leverage ratio of the E&P companies reviewed in 2016 was 6.0x...

The EFTA Court renders judgment in landmark public procurement case
Simonsen Vogt Wiig AS, November 2017

Simonsen Vogt Wiig and lead counsel Anders Thue represented Fosen-Linjen AS (a ferry operator) against AtB AS before the EFTA Court. AtB organises the public transportation in one of the Norwegian counties. In its judgment delivered on 31 October 2017 (in Case E-16/16), the EFTA Court replied to questions referred to it by the Frostating Court of Appeal (Frostating lagmannsrett)...

Updates and Highlights in the Mexican Energy Sector, September-October 2017
Haynes and Boone, LLP, November 2017

During the months of September and October 2017, new regulations and administrative guidelines in the Mexican energy sector were issued. These are of particular importance to oil and gas producers, midstream companies, power generators, traders, developers and others looking to invest or expand operations in Mexico’s dynamic energy sector. I. Hydrocarbons September 5, 2017. NOM-167-SEMARNAT-2017...

Uganda Insurance Regulatory Authority clarifies new bancassurance guidelines
ENSafrica, November 2017

The Ugandan Insurance Regulatory Authority (“IRA”) has released clarification on its recently published bancassurance guidelines. Following the publication of the Insurance (Bancassurance) Regulations, 2017, the IRA published guidelines on the licensing of financial institutions as bancassurance agents...

Current Challenges With International Recognition and Enforcement of Mortgages on Ships - Is the Solution found in the Aviation Sector?
Simonsen Vogt Wiig AS, October 2017

Current Challenges with International Recognition and enforcement of Mortgages on Ships – Is the Solution found in the Aviation Sector? Introduction Having practised both as a shipping lawyer and an aviation lawyer for many years, I do find the experience and practice with the Cape Town Convention and aviation finance transactions to be interesting when experiencing the challenges faced by the shipping industry with respect to recognition and enforcement of mortgages...

Take Action by December 31st or Lose DMCA Safe Harbor Protection for User-Generated Content
Haynes and Boone, LLP, October 2017

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998 (the “DMCA”) provided a safe harbor to shield website owners, ISP’s, and other online service providers from certain claims for copyright infringement based on user generated content. This safe harbor has been very successful...

Stop! Wait! Move! - No Longer Stamp Duty for Residential Homes
DORDA, October 2017

On 12 October 2017, right in a last minute attempt to win undecided voters for one of the political parties, the leaving members of parliament enacted a new tax law. While fundamental changes to the Austrian Tenancy Law had been vividly discussed between the socialist and the conservative parties in recent years, the new law on the abolition of stamp duty falls completely short of what could have been achieved...

Design Risk: What Have You Agreed?
Haynes and Boone, LLP, October 2017

Contractual negotiations for ships and offshore units commonly involve commercial, legal, and technical teams negotiating different parts of the contract. It is however crucial that before the contract is signed, it is read as a whole to ensure consistency in a party’s obligations throughout the contract. The English Supreme Court’s judgment inMT Højgaard A/S v. E...

The Right to be Forgotten
Afridi & Angell, October 2017

Afridi & Angell has recently successfully assisted two individuals in becoming forgotten. Put another way, we were able to convince the Dubai Financial Services Authority (the DFSA) that the names of the individuals should be removed from public documents available on the DFSA website. These included published regulatory actions (in the form of enforceable undertakings) and DFSA media releases...

A Checklist for Victims of Napa/Sonoma Fires: Recovering from Your Insurance
Haynes and Boone, LLP, October 2017

The purpose of this alert is to provide victims of the Napa/Sonoma fires a checklist to use when seeking recovery from their insurance companies. Property Insurance policies may provide coverage for damage to both your property and your business. Business losses can result from a variety of causes, all of which may be covered under a property policy...

Outlook on Law and Business in Poland
Wardynski & Partners, October 2017

A new item has been added to the extensive catalogue of the firm’s publications. In our Outlook on law and business in Poland we discuss trends in changes in the law, such as increased regulatory pressure and increased penalisation of commerce. These are illuminated by concrete examples from practice and conclusions concerning the consequences of these phenomena that can be expected to occur or are already happening...

From Functional Analysis to Value Chain Analysis
ENSafrica, October 2017

Attacks by the South African Revenue Service (“SARS”) on the transfer pricing practices of multinational enterprises (“MNEs”) are on the rise, leading to tax disputes with SARS over significant amounts of tax. MNEs operating in South Africa provide information to SARS in various forms such as annual Corporate Income Tax returns, Country-by-Country reports as well as the extensive Transfer Pricing documentation...

Don't Just Say Your IT System is Secure, Prove it
Ulmer & Berne LLP, October 2017

In today’s environment, where cybersecurity threats are becoming more and more pervasive, even small healthcare organizations understand that purporting to have comprehensive data privacy and security policies and procedures in place isn’t enough. Business partners want more. Regulators demand more. They want implementation and efficacy. They want to know that health and other sensitive data will truly be protected from threats – in actuality...

“Breaking ground” to calculate mineral royalties on unrefined minerals
ENSafrica, October 2017

The 2014 changes to the South African Mineral and Petroleum Resources Royalty Act, 2008 (the “Royalty Act”) have left mining companies and extractors (“taxpayers”) in uncertain territory...

Slovenia Adopts Class Action Law
Karanovic & Nikolic, October 2017

Slovenia Adopts Class Action Law Views Karanovic & Nikolic The Slovenian National Assembly adopted the Class Action Law, which will implement an important institute to the Slovenian legal system, i.e. mechanism of class action. This mechanism is already applied in the UK, Belgium, Netherlands and Sweden, but is yet to be implemented in numerous EU member states...

Dividends tax: The importance of determining when a dividend is “due and payable”
ENSafrica, October 2017

Section 64E(1) of the South African Income Tax Act, 1962 (the “Act”) provides that dividends tax must be levied at a rate of 20% of the amount of any dividend paid by any company, other than a headquarter company. In terms of section 64EA(a) of the Act, the beneficial owner of a cash dividend is liable for dividends tax in respect of that dividend. However, in terms of section 64F(1), a cash dividend is exempt from dividends tax in various instances...

 

 

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