A number of bombshells have been dropped during the Nugent Commission of Inquiry into operations at Sars.
One of the revelations that raised eyebrows was the R120 000 price tag that a firm of lawyers charged Sars simply for reading a book and checking references made to the suspended Commissioner Tom Moyane.
Following this revelation, CapeTalk's Kieno Kammies speaks to Kabelo Seabi at the Law Society of South Africa to understand the exorbitant legal fees that lawyers charge SOEs.
Seabi explained how the Law Society of South Africa handles these matters and the rules that ensure that lawyers do not overcharge clients.
No law practitioner is entitled to overreach a client...— Kabelo Seabi, attorney with Law Society of South Africa
The council of the Law Society is empowered in the statute to assess the reasonableness of any fee and if a client is not happy with a fee charged by a law practitioner they can contact the Law Society to assess the fee.— Kabelo Seabi, attorney with Law Society of South Africa
The committee of the Law Society will look at the nature of the work that was done, the complexity of it, the seniority of the practitioner who did the work, the importance of the work to the client and we will determine what is a reasonable fee doing such non-litigious work.— Kabelo Seabi, attorney with Law Society of South Africa
Seabi says lawyers read documents all the time. He says the work done at Sars doesnt look that complicated because generally, lawyers are given 20 pages an hour to read.
According to Seabi, the Law Society is entitled to conduct an investigation into fees charged by a law practitioner without a client's complaint.
It is not clear whether the Law Society will conduct an investigation of the Sars issue.
To hear the rest of the conversation, listen below:
This article first appeared on CapeTalk : Law Society responds to lawyers charging Sars R120 000 for reading a book