Terms of Service
When you apply to open an account with De Beer Attorneys, you agree to the following terms of engagement:
GENERAL TERMS AND CONDITIONS
These standard terms and conditions (“Terms”) are to be read together with the terms (if any) as expressly agreed between the Parties. These Terms apply to the provision of services as specifically agreed between the Parties as set out in a Pro Forma invoice. Where the Pro Forma Invoice is accepted by a Client, the Pro Forma Invoice together with these Terms shall constitute the agreement (“Agreement”) between De Beer Attorneys and the Client.
“Client” means the entity indicated as the Account Holder as indicated in the above New Client Form;
“Proposal” means the Pro Forma invoice which is sent to the Client in response to an enquiry by the Client;
“Services” means those services which De Beer Attorneys shall provide to the Client as described in the relevant purchase; and
“Time Basis” means the basis on which De Beer Attorneys shall charge the Client for the Services if a fixed price is not stipulated beforehand and which is based on the time spent, the materials utilized to execute such work and if specified in the Pro Forma Invoice, the travelling costs incurred by the professional staff of De Beer Attorneys in rendering the Services.
3. RENDERING OF SERVICES:
The scope of work to be performed and to which these terms and conditions shall apply shall be those services (“Services”) as more fully stipulated in the Pro Forma Invoice. The Services to be rendered by De Beer Attorneys to the Client will be accepted by the Client upon delivery of documentation to the Client, completion of the applicable milestone or the Service, as the case may be.
Neither Party shall be liable for any indirect, special or consequential damages of any kind, whether for loss of profit, loss of business, loss of goodwill or loss of use of data, interruption of business, under or arising out of this Agreement or the provision of Services, whether caused contractually or delictually and whether caused directly or indirectly. In no event shall De Beer Attorney’s total aggregate liability for direct damages exceed the amount as stipulated in the accompanying Pro Forma Invoice.
5. PRICING AND PAYMENT TERMS:
5.1 The prices reflected in the Pro Forma Invoice are based on inter alia rates of exchange, interest and taxation rates, freight charges (if any), insurance, costs of labor and materials and other charges ruling at the date of this Pro Forma Invoice. Any variation in any of the aforesaid rates and/or charges occurring subsequent to the date of the Pro Forma Invoice shall entitle De Beer Attorneys to vary the amount payable by the Client at the time of invoice. The amount stipulated on the Pro Forma invoice is exclusive of bank charges and general disbursements, if applicable.
For local, South African clients (where we are working on a fixed cost basis) we normally require payment of at least 50% of the quoted amount upfront, before commencing formal instructions. We may be prepared to make indulgences in respect of our deposit policy, if set out accordingly in our Pro Forma Invoice. In this regard we agree to a split of 50% of the estimated fees upfront with the rest becoming immediately payable upon the presentation of our invoice for the instruction, upon completion of the work. Deposits are payable into our Trust Account. The details of our Trust Account will be forwarded upon as receiving formal instructions or upon issuance of the Proposal.
5.3 IF SERVICE RENDERED ON A FIXED COST BASIS:
The price stipulated in the Pro Forma Invoice shall remain fixed for the duration of any Service. Work shall be performed against Service milestones and payment shall be made upon completion and/or partial completion of specific milestones or payment schedules, at the price or in the manner stipulated in the Pro Forma Invoice.
5.4 IF SERVICES RENDERED ON A TIME BASIS:
In such instance(s), any amount(s) indicated in the Pro Forma Invoice, shall be regarded as an estimated amount(s). All man-hours worked by De Beer Attorneys’ professional staff shall be invoiced at an hourly rate of between R2800 (US$216) and R1800 (US$138) per hour, depending on the seniority of the attorney involved, or as otherwise stipulated in the Pro Forma invoice. Upon request, during office hours, the Client shall have access reasonable details with regards to the hours and costs incurred by the Client in order to allow the Client to closely manage the cost of the Services. For Services rendered on a Time Basis, De Beer Attorneys shall submit invoices during the course of the matter and the Client will make payment immediately upon receipt thereof.
If your matter is subject to a deadline, you have to inform us in writing of such deadline by which you require completion of your matter or instruction. In the course of completing instructions, in particular those related to Registrations, we are dependent on the efficiency of the relevant Registry and communications of foreign agents. We are also always dependent on the available infrastructure including that of Postal Services and electricity suppliers. We commit to the best turn-around times possible, but cannot guarantee turn-around times where we are dependent on input or facilities supplied by third parties. In this regard, please note that the registration process in South Africa as regards patents, designs and trademarks is ordinarily a lengthy process.
7. PERSONAL DATA:
You agree to promptly provide us with additional details to comply with all of the requirements under applicable anti-money laundering legislation in South Africa (FICA) when called upon to do so. We respect the privacy of our clients. And confirm that the personal information of our clients will be held confidential and will not be sold or otherwise provided to third parties, unless required by law. We will also make our best efforts to secure your information on our systems.
8. NEWS LETTER:
You confirm that you would like to receive newsletters from our firm from time to time. These newsletters include information relating to our firm, which may improve your rights or legal developments which may be relevant to your business. You will always have the option to unsubscribe from any electronic newsletters we may send you.
9. CONTACT DETAILS:
You agree to provide us with your most recent contact details and that the contact details provided are correct and accurate. You agree to inform us of any changes in the above contact details within a reasonable time of such changes. In the event that your contact details have changed, and after taking reasonable steps to locate you for a period of 6 months (including email, registered post, telephone, fax and email contacts as well as searches on the Internet and Company Register) we reserve the right to cease rendering services and withdraw as “address for service”.
10. UNPAID INVOICES:
If invoices are not paid promptly, we reserve the right to immediately cease rendering services, cease incurring costs on your matters, withdraw as attorneys of record at any time, and take legal action against you to recover such payments. If any steps are taken for recovery of any amount, you agree to pay such costs of such court proceedings on a client-attorney scale as well as any other costs related to the recovery of your outstanding amount.
11. INTEREST ON UNPAID INVOICES:
If invoices are not paid and settled in full by the due date as indicated on the invoice, we reserve the right to immediately charge interest at a rate of 2% per month until such time that the invoice has been settled in full in accordance with Section 8(4) and 103(2) of the National Credit Agreement.
The terms of this document constitute the basis of our engagement and the signed document is a valid agreement between our firm and the instructor indicated above. You, the signatory hereof, confirm that you are duly authorized to bind the instructor indicated above to these terms and agreement. These terms of engagement are also published on our website located at http://www.debeerattorneys.com and may be updated from time to time.