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Consumer law expert Jana van Zyl rounds out Dommisse Attorneys team

Commercial law firm Dommisse Attorneys has been joined by new partner Jana van Zyl, an expert in consumer law, as part of the firm's process of acquisition of RTK Attorneys.


"Jana's presence on the team means we can offer a rounded set of compliance and commercial skills to our clients," says lead partner Adrian Dommisse. Dommisse says there is an increasing need for guidance on how to comply with the raft of new consumer-related legislation that has been introduced in recent years.  This applies to the many firm clients in the ICT industry, but also more generically.


The more important laws include not just the Consumer Protection Act (CPA), but also the National Credit Act (NCA), the Electronic Communications and Transactions Act (ECT), and more recently the Protection of Personal Information Bill (POPI) which is expected to be enacted soon.


“POPI compliance will need to be considered by any business who processes any personal information” says Van Zyl, who is assisting several large clients in the retail industry, “and in that case a compliance project is an essential governance exercise. We do that by delivering a gap analysis to the client, then developing an action plan and then helping the client to implement appropriate business processes.”


On CPA side, Van Zyl says clients also often ask for one-off consultations and opinions relating to the application of the CPA to their particular business operations. These could include everything from the wording of customer facing documentation, policies and competition terms to guidance on practically implementing a particular section of the legislation.


“Training is a crucial component of what our firm does,” she adds. “A number of common practices around marketing and promotions, for example, have had to change with the introduction of the CPA and POPI will add to that once enacted. Clients often need in-depth training before they can understand and implement the new laws in their everyday business practice.”

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