Read of the Week

Everyone’s Guide to South African Law (4th edition)

AM Anderson, A Dodd and MC Roos

Zebra Press

Review: Brian Joss

This updated edition includes new information about protection from harassment; parental duties and responsibilities; travelling with children; electronic fund transfers; the Road Accident Fund and consumer law, to name some.

As with the first three editions (all reviewed) the authors explain complex legal issues in language devoid of jargon.

It’s packed with useful information and the chapters on consumer law are enlightening. The authors expand on contracts; your consumer rights; credit agreements and the law as it applies to sport and recreation, which is included in the section on consumer law.

Important points are highlighted in text boxes: one for example, says repairs or maintenance work carry a three-month warranty. The warranty includes the labour and parts used.

There is also a comprehensive chapter on education law, which clearly spells out the duties and responsibilities of a school governing body.

The onus is on the parents to see to it that the child attends school from the first school day of the year in which he turns seven until the last school day in which he completes Grade 9 or turns 15, whichever comes first.

Other useful information is a step-by-step guide to the Small Claims Court; an explanation of when your rights are being infringed by an ex-spouse, your employer or the state. There are four pages of addresses of various bodies, organisations and ombudsmen you can complain to.

When I reviewed the first edition I noted that, “if you buy one guide this year, then you must buy this one”. And I haven’t changed my mind. There should be a copy in every office, home, school and library, and not just for decoration. It will be well used and help you to understand tricky points of law.