Why class action lawsuits don't get that far in SA

Ride-hailing service Uber faces a class action lawsuit following a number of high-profile incidents involving the platform.

Criminal defence attorney Ulrich Roux is representing 11 Uber victims who were either robbed, raped and attacked while using the service in South Africa.

But how likely is the lawsuit to succeed? Law expert Dr Theo Broodryk says the class action is not the appropriate legal mechanism in this case.

Read: Commuters file a class action lawsuit against e-hailing service Uber

Broodryk says that class actions suits are relatively novel in SA, with no completed trials to date because of settlements.

Before a class action lawsuit can proceed, the class must be certified, which creates two stages of the procedure.

A class action is divided into two phases. To date, there's been no completed class action litigated in South Africa.

Dr Theo Broodryk, Senior Lecturer - Stellenbosch University Faculty Of Law

Many class action lawsuits are settled out of court after the case has been certified and given the go-ahead, Broodryk explains. Therefore, most cases never make it to trial.

Almost 90% of class actions settle after they have been certified.

Dr Theo Broodryk, Senior Lecturer - Stellenbosch University Faculty Of Law

There has been an abuse of the mechanism. There are class action law firms who specialise in this field because they know that it's very likely to settle after they get the class action certified.

Dr Theo Broodryk, Senior Lecturer - Stellenbosch University Faculty Of Law

Also read: Uber SA says insurance cover is in place, but consumers tell a different story

He also argues that the absence of scrutiny or legal framework has hindered the advancement of class action proceedings.

The problem in SA is that we don't have a single piece of legislation or a court rule that regulates class actions. So we rely exclusively on the courts to tell us what the process is.

Dr Theo Broodryk, Senior Lecturer - Stellenbosch University Faculty Of Law

Listen to the expert discussion on The John Maytham Show:


This article first appeared on CapeTalk : Why class action lawsuits don't get that far in SA


Recommended

by NEWSROOM AI
Read More
Has Boris Johnson scuppered his chances for a go at the UK's top job?

Has Boris Johnson scuppered his chances for a go at the UK's top job?

Police were called to the home of the prime ministerial hopeful following an alleged altercation with his girlfriend.

What does the future hold for vandal-hit Gugulethu fire station?

What does the future hold for vandal-hit Gugulethu fire station?

The station has suffered in excess of R500,000 worth of damage over the past 11 months and was most recently targeted on 14 June.

Commuters file a class action lawsuit against e-hailing service Uber

Commuters file a class action lawsuit against e-hailing service Uber

Uber victims lawyer Ulrich Roux says his clients have all gone through terrible ordeals while riding in Uber vehicles.

Some of the weirdest things people leave in an Uber - Uber Lost & Found Index.

Some of the weirdest things people leave in an Uber - Uber Lost & Found Index.

The ride-hailing service releases aits 3rd annual list of the weirdest things left in Ubers this past year.

Why ride-hailing companies not legally responsible for driver behaviour

Why ride-hailing companies not legally responsible for driver behaviour

A company such as Taxify and Uber cannot be held responsible Western Cape Transport MEC, Donald Grant.

Uber SA says insurance cover is in place, but consumers tell a different story

Uber SA says insurance cover is in place, but consumers tell a different story

Uber says the blanket cover is paid for by the company in case of death, disability or injury suffered by drivers and passengers.

Popular articles
Investec gives staff unlimited leave days and freedom to wear what they want

Investec gives staff unlimited leave days and freedom to wear what they want

The bank rewards innovation with substantial bonuses and pays according to output not hours at work, says Lesley-Anne Gatter.

JSE Limited lost 10% of its value on Monday

JSE Limited lost 10% of its value on Monday

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews Nicky Newton-King, CEO at the JSE Limited.

Astral Foods, employer of 12 000, is at risk due to failing water infrastructure

Astral Foods, employer of 12 000, is at risk due to failing water infrastructure

Government dreams about bullet trains and megacities, but don't provide basic services, says Chris Schutte, CEO at Astral Foods.

We've technologist on record saying she'll not treat patients - Discovery Health

We've technologist on record saying she'll not treat patients - Discovery Health

CEO Dr Broomberg has rubbished reports that a KwaZulu-Natal patient died after the company stopped payments.

Cape Town man found alive in eSwatini, believed dead for 6 years

Cape Town man found alive in eSwatini, believed dead for 6 years

His family believed he had died and performed a memorial service for him but now they are struggling to get him back home.

Public Protector has now become a "rogue unit", says Judge Kriegler

Public Protector has now become a "rogue unit", says Judge Kriegler

Busisiwe Mkhwebane is reportedly probing President Cyril Ramaphosa for alleged money laundering to the tune of R400m.

[WATCH] Sho Madjozi first female South African to win BET award

[WATCH] Sho Madjozi first female South African to win BET award

The rapper, singer and songwriting superstar walked away with the best new international act on Sunday evening in Los Angeles.

Gauteng waitress gets R18,000 tip for 'amazing service'

Gauteng waitress gets R18,000 tip for 'amazing service'

A waitress at The Beerhouse in Fourways who received the generous donation wants to finish her matric and become a paramedic.

Billionaire gives away R100 billion, leaving only 0.0002% of fortune for himself

Billionaire gives away R100 billion, leaving only 0.0002% of fortune for himself

You've probably never heard of Chuck Feeney. Nevertheless, he’s one of the strangest, most impactful people who has ever lived.