COSTS, COVID 19 AND LOCKDOWN
As we move onto the next phase of the battle against COVID 19 we confirm all staff will continue to work from home.
For any Cape Town queries, kindly contact me on 079 814 4433
For any Johannesburg queries, kindly contact Stan on 083 326 4898
Everyone has access to emails and is available to assist.
As we continue trying to digest what is happening to the world around us, our priority is the safety and security of family, friends, clients and colleagues. While it is difficult to make plans for the future when everyday brings new challenges we can take steps to try and find some stability within those changes that are happening.
All staff at Rand Taxing Consultants will continue to work remotely, where we have set up the necessary infrastructure for them to do so.
While the offices are closed for collections, you do have the option to forward files electronically either via email, dropbox or one drive. All staff have the necessary facilities to work on electronic files.
As per the practice directive by the Judge President, in Cape Town, all taxations in the Western Cape Division have been postponed until at least the end of April 2020. This of course will have a significant effect on all existing matters enrolled for taxations and future allocations. While unclear from the directive, the postponements to end of April will extend to all lower Courts.
We have therefore held discussions with various Costs Consultants to assist with mediating costs issues over teleconferencing services such as Skype and Zoom and make the following joint announcement:
Postponement of all taxations in the Western Cape
With the postponement of all taxations in the Western Cape High Court, with other Divisions and lower Courts to probably follow shortly, we have set up a board of 5 highly experienced Legal Costs Consultants who are willing to assist with mediating costs issues over teleconferencing services such as Skype and Zoom.
Postponement dates are likely to leave all parties in an untenable predicament.
In times such as the current situation our country is experiencing, we need to provide innovative solutions to assist the legal fraternity in finalising costs disputes.
Our firms have decided to stand together to provide the following service:
Heleen van Dyke, Nick du Preez, Stan Friedlander, Matthys Lourens and Kevin Friedlander will provide the following to you:
• Mediation of costs settlements by guiding the parties to a solution when certain items remain in dispute after settlement attempts have been made.
• Mediation by way of Skype or Zoom.
• By agreement all mediation rates while the courts remain closed will be i.t.o. Rule 70 - R292.50 per 15 min or part thereof.
These costs mediators are all members of the Board of Legal Costs Mediators (BLCM) and are available at your convenience.
Please contact any of the following members:
• Heleen van Dyke - firstname.lastname@example.org - 082 820 2270
• Nick du Preez - email@example.com - 082 940 8979
• Kevin Friedlander - firstname.lastname@example.org - 079 814 4433
• Matthys Lourens - email@example.com - 083 270 2344
• Stan Friedander – JHB@randtax.co.za – 083 326 4898
We will continue to add to this list as more Costs Consultants come on board.
During these trying times, whether presenting bills for taxation or opposing, I would strongly urge all parties to immediately commence settlement discussions with a view to settlement. I am in discussions with the Taxing Masters to attempt to have settled bills allocated remotely.
Should settlement not be possible and attempts at mediation as above fail to finalise the matter, I would suggest both parties agree to taxation by arbitration which may be conducted remotely. Documentation may be uploaded and rulings made either based on written submissions or via argument on Skype/Zoom.
There are workable solutions and all of us at Rand Taxing Consultants will do everything we can to limit the disruption to our everyday as much as possible.
Wishing you all safe and healthy for the weeks and months ahead.
Thank you for your support, it is always appreciated.