What is a transfer of a business, and what are the implications for the new owner of the business? This week Ivan Israelstam uses examples of cases to explain the expensive consequences for a business owner, who does not follow the requirements of the Labour Relations Act.
This week Ivan Israelstam explains that employees have many rights, but there is also a fiduciary duty towards the employer. He explains what this means, and why there is a stronger duty to be trustworthy upon the more senior the employee.
What exactly is entrapment and is it legal for an employer to entrap an employee? What is the difference between entrapment, and trapping? Employers who are not trained lawyers may well find this all very difficult to understand and end up on the wrong side of a CCMA decision. This week Ivan Israelstam explains what an employer needs to do in order to prove that they have acted legally and fairly in a dismissal.
Some employers may assume that illegal immigrants or employees without work permits have no legal rights in South Africa. This view may lead employers to mistreat staff, who are vulnerable because the employer believes that such employees have no recourse to labour law. This week Ivan Israelstam explains that employers should take note that this view is incorrect and why it is ill-advised.
This week, Ivan Israelstam explains the legally distinct reasons for dismissal: for misconduct, for poor work performance, and for operational requirements. These are distinctly different reasons, and each has a distinctly different procedure to achieve a legally compliant dismissal. There are always exceptions in the cases, but employers are well-advised to follow the standard methods for each circumstance.
This week Ivan Israelstam explains why it is important that an employee should be allowed to cross-examination witnesses giving evidence at a disciplinary hearing. Sometimes a chairperson will interrupt or limit the employee's questions. What is the implication when this happens?
When an employer has interns or trainees, such as apprentices, or learners on learnerships, are they defined as employees or not? This week Ivan Israelstam explains how the Labour Relations Act defines an "employee". As Ivan advises always ensure that trainees are treated fairly. We recommend that this article be read in conjunction with the Sectoral Determination on Learnerships available on the Department of Labour website.
The precise nature of the ownership of companies can sometimes be difficult to discern. But employers should be under no illusion that if they attempt to avoid labour law obligations by creating complex ownership schemes, the CCMA and the labour courts will devote time and attention to "unveiling" the true nature of the ownership and the employer obligation. In this manner, more than one company may become jointly and severally responsible for the labour law obligations. Ivan Israelstam provides examples of how this may happen.
The media often features stories of bribery and corruption. Employers often simply assume - or hope - that these activities happen elsewhere. However, employers would be well served to follow Ivan Israelstam's guidance on what constitutes these activities - how they are defined, and how they should be managed professionally.
A retrenchment is considered a "no fault" dismissal. Therefore, while it may become necessary for a company to retrench, every consideration should be given to alternatives to retrenchment. This applies particularly to employees with long service, and also to employees who have the skills required to maintain and develop the business. Ivan Israelstam what aspects should be considered by companies before deciding on a path of retrenchment
Why is clarification of the date of the sale of a business so relevant? The Labour Relations Act provides protections for employees when ownership of a business changes hands. Potential sellers and purchasers need to take very good care not to transgress those employee protections. Ivan Israelstam explains further.