Welcome to eJudgements’ SA Online Law Reports
Who Are We?
eJudgements is an independent online publisher of South African Law Reports. We publish judgements of the South African Superior Courts.
The value added is not in making South African judgements available on the internet, that is done by many of the South African Courts already, but by the powerful indexing and search features.
With the development of the digital age, the traditional law reporting model has not adapted. Previously the Law Reports produced by the commercial publishers held a monopoly on what was accessible to the legal profession (and anyone who wanted access to South African judgements), because it was simply not possible to access judgements other than obtaining them directly from the registrars of the different Courts. That changed with many of the Courts having their own websites (for example, the Constitutional Court, Supreme Court of Appeal, and the Labour Court). Saflii has advanced access to the law immeasurably.
But the benefit of the digital age is also its downfall. There is just too much information to be able to sift through quickly and easily to find the definitive answer. A library, without an indexing system, is just a pile of books. So too, the internet.
What Does eJudgements’ SA Online Law Reports Do?
That is what eJudgements seeks to address: Making sense of a mass of information.
A Google search including Saflii, or any of the other sites, will produce results, but they still need to be sifted and if the search criteria are not exact, they will miss what could be a crucial case.
We don’t have all the judgements, but then a comparison between Juta, Lexis and Saflii will show that there is no publisher or website in South Africa which does have access to all the judgements.
eJudgements covers judgements from all the Superior Courts in South Africa.
Examples Of How Our Law Reports Work
Here are some screenshots of what we do. You can also view our demo videos.
The home page includes a list of recently added cases:
Where we have the judgement of the Court a quo, we list whether it has been confirmed on appeal
Or overturned on appeal
The Judgements Library contains a list of all the cases, with the option to filter by a number of criteria:
For example: A filter for judgements by Theron J:
Or where the Judge has dissented, eg Jafta J in the Constitutional Court:
Filters by Subject are also possible:
After doing a search you will see a list of cases which meet the criteria. You will also see a list of possible refinements which you can use to narrow down the search.
The same search as above, but refined by the subject matter “Labour”
See for yourself what we can do:
eJudgements not only uses the extremely powerful Sharepoint search functionality, but we are tagging cases to enable searches to be refined (eg according to subject matter, Court, even counsel who appeared in the case).
eJudgements is cloud-based, so you are not tied to your desk. As long as you have an internet connection, you have access.