Stephan Van der Merwe

Senior Attorney, Notary Public and Lecturer/Senior Prokureur, Notaris Publiek en Lektor

BComm LLB LLM (cum laude) PGDip Higher Education Teaching and Learning (cum laude)

 


 

Stephan van der Merwe joined the Law Clinic, University of Stellenbosch as practising attorney in 2001, after serving his articles of clerkship in private practice.  Earlier he graduated from the University of Stellenbosch with a B Comm LLB and during 2002 he obtained an Advanced Certificate in Children’s Rights.  In 2005 he obtained an LLM (cum laude) and during 2007 he qualified as notary public and attorney with right of appearance in the High Court.  In 2017 he obtained a Post-Graduate Diploma in Higher Education Teaching and Learning (cum laude).

Stephan is deeply involved with community service in his capacity as the senior supervising attorney at the Law Clinic.  During the early 2000’s his work was instrumental in exposing the interest fraud which eventually led to the demise of Saambou Bank.  He also has extensive experience representing debtors in rescission of judgment and emoluments attachment order cases and his practice and research in this regard proved valuable in framing the applicant’s case in the Constitutional Court matter of University of Stellenbosch Legal Aid Clinic & others v Minister of Justice and Correctional Services & Others [2016] ZACC 32. Stephan has been the Clinic’s principal attorney on various other impact litigation matters related to his field of practice, including the 2019 in duplum case (University of Stellenbosch Law Clinic & 11 Others v The National Credit Regulator & 48 Others) and the University of Stellenbosch Law Clinic & 8 Others v Lifestyle Direct Group International (Pty) Ltd & 18 Others class action filed during 2019. He also advises and presents training on debt related matters, and specifically emoluments attachment orders, to human resource industries on a national level.

Stephan is a former secretary and treasurer of the South African University Law Clinic Association (SAULCA) and is currently a member of the International Association of Legal Ethics and a Fellow of the National Institute for Teaching Ethics & Professionalism (NIFTEP), based at Georgia State University, USA. He has published a number of articles in accredited journals and his academic field of interest is Clinical Legal Education. In 2019, he was awarded the Stellenbosch University Institutional Teaching Excellence Award in the category ‘Developing Teacher’. The award is based on experience and leadership in the scholarship of teaching and learning. He lectures Civil Procedure, Practical Legal Training and Legal Skills at the Faculty of Law, University of Stellenbosch.

Areas of specialisation 

General Civil Law and Research

Modules taught

Practical Legal Training 471

Law of Civil Procedure 371

Legal Skills 411

 

Stephan van der Merwe het gedurende 2001 by die Regskliniek, Universiteit van Stellenbosch aangesluit as praktiserende prokureur, nadat hy sy klerkskap in die privaat praktyk voltooi het.  Vroeër het hy aan die Universiteit van Stellenbosch gradueer met ʼn BComm LLB en gedurende 2002 het hy ʼn Gevorderde Sertifikaat in Kinderreg verwerf.  Gedurende 2005 het hy ’n LLM (cum laude) behaal en in 2007 gekwalifiseer hy as notaris publiek en prokureur met reg van verskyning in die Hooggeregshof.  Gedurende 2017 verwerf hy ʼn Nagraadse Diploma in Hoër Onderwys Onderrig en Leer (cum laude).

Stephan is intensief betrokke by gemeenskapsdiens in sy hoedanigheid as die senior toesighoudende prokureur by die Regskliniek. Gedurende die vroeë 2000’s was sy werk hoofsaaklik om die rente-bedrog bloot te stel wat uiteindelik tot die ondergang van Saambou Bank aanleiding gegee het. Hy het ook uitgebreide ervaring met die verteenwoordiging van skuldenaars in tersydestelling van vonnis en besoldigingsbeslagleggingsbevele sake en sy praktykswerk en navorsing in hierdie verband was waardevol in die samestelling van die applikante se saak in die Konstitusionele Hof van University of Stellenbosch Legal Aid Clinic & others v Minister of Justice and Correctional Services & Others; Association of Debt Recovery Agents NPC v Clinic & Others; Mavava Trading 279 (Pty) Ltd & Others v Clinic & Others 2016 ZACC 32. Stephan is die Kliniek se prinsipaal prokureur op verskeie ander impak litigasie aangeleenthede verbandhoudend met die gebiede waarin hy praktiseer, insluitend die 2019 in duplum saak (University of Stellenbosch Law Clinic & 11 Others v The National Credit Regulator & 48 Others) en die University of Stellenbosch Law Clinic & 8 Others v Lifestyle Direct Group International (Pty) Ltd & 18 Others klasaksie wat in gedurende 2019 uitgereik is. Hy adviseer en bied opleiding aan oor skuldverwante aangeleenthede, en spesifiek besoldigingsbeslagleggingsbevele, aan menslike hulpbron organisasies op nasionale vlak.

Stephan is ’n voormalige sekretaris en tesourier van die South African University Law Clinic Association (SAULCA) en is huidiglik ʼn lid van die International Association of Legal Ethics en genoot van die National Institute for Teaching Ethics & Professionalism (NIFTEP), gebaseer te Georgia State University, VSA. Hy het ʼn aantal artikels in geakkrediteerde joernale gepubliseer en sy akademiese belangstelling lê by Kliniese Regsopleiding. Gedurende 2019 is hy beloon met die Stellenbosch University Institutional Teaching Excellence Award in die kategorie “Developing Teacher”. Die toekenning is gebaseer op ervaring en leierskap in die akademieskap van onderrig en leer. Hy bied Praktiese Regsopleiding en Regsvaardighede by die Regsfakulteit, Universiteit van Stellenbosch aan.

Areas van belangstelling

Algemene Siviele Reg en Navorsing

Modules aangebied 

Praktiese Regsopleiding 471

Siviele Prosesreg 371

Regsvaardighede 411

 

Publications/Publikasies 

Journal articles/Joernaalartikels 

  • Van der Merwe SJH “Too simple for National Credit Act matters: Reconsidering the scope of Magistrates’ Court Rule 5(2)(b)” (2019) 136 SALJ 397-403
  • Van der Merwe SJH “Traversing the South African Emolument Attachment Order Legal Landscape Post 2016: Quo Vadis?” (2019) 30 Stellenbosch Law Review 77-96.
  • Van der Merwe SJH “Contemporary challenges facing law clinics” (2018) De Rebus 15-16.
  • Van der Merwe SJH, B Richards-Bray, S Hardy & A East “Robots and the Law” (2018) 12 European Foundation for Management Development Global Focus Journal 46-49.
  • Van der Merwe SJH “A Case Study in Advocating for Expanded Clinical Legal Education: The University of Stellenbosch Module” (2017) 28 Stellenbosch Law Review  679-701.
  • Van der Merwe SJH “Cautioning the careless writer: The importance of accurate and ethical legal writing” (2014) 39 Journal for Juridical Science 23‑52.
  • Van der Merwe SJH “Lacking proper judgment? Letter to editor” (2013) De Rebus.
  • Van der Merwe SJH “Objections in Civil Litigation by P van den Heever” (2011) 22 Stell LR 228-230.
  • Van der Merwe SJH “Failure to discharge.  A discussion of the insufficient legal recourse afforded to judgment debtors in the South African context” (2008) Journal for Juridical Science Special Issue 71-86.
  • Van der Merwe SJH “Litigation Skills for South African Lawyers by CG Marnewick” (2005) 16 Stell LR 165-167.

Chapters in books/Hoofstukke in boeke

  • Van der Merwe SJH “Simulated exercises” in J Bodenstein (ed) Law Clinics and the Clinical Law Movement in South Africa (2017), Cape Town: Juta & Co.
  • Van der Merwe SJH “Civil trial advocacy in J Bodenstein (ed) Law Clinics and the Clinical Law Movement in South Africa (2017), Cape Town: Juta & Co.

Papers and lectures at national and international forums/Referate en lesings by nasionale en internasionale forums 

  • Van der Merwe SJH Strategies to protect consumer rights presented at the Open Society Foundations Abusive Lending Community of Practice Convening in Naples Italy, 22-11-2019.
  • Van der Merwe SJH Spotlighting innovative accountability strategies (discussion as member of expert panel) delivered at the Open Society Foundation: Justice Initiative Pan-African Convening on Abusive Lending Practices and Social Protection in Nairobi Kenya, 01-11-2019.
  • Van der Merwe SJH South African debt industry’s ‘dirty little secret presented at the 10th Annual African Debt Collection Convention, held at Emperor’s Palace Johannesburg, 12-09-2019.
  • Van der Merwe SJH Negotiating the South African emolument attachment order legal landscape unpublished paper presented as part of the Bargaining Council for the Civil Engineering Industry training roadshows in Durban, East London, Bloemfontein, Port Elizabeth, Cape Town and Johannesburg during August to October 2019.
  • Van der Merwe SJH What are Legal Ethics & Why Do They Matter When Addressing Injustice? (2018) unpublished paper presented at a the National Institute for Teaching Ethics & Professionalism (NIFTEP) hosted by Fall Workshop at the Melbourne University, 04-06-2018.
  • Van der Merwe SJH Framing Ethics & Professionalism in a Climate of Uncivility (2018) unpublished paper presented at a the National Institute for Teaching Ethics & Professionalism (NIFTEP) hosted by Fall Workshop at the Melbourne University, 04-06-2018.
  • Van der Merwe SJH Intentional about impact: Changing lives and laws through the work of University Law Clinics (2018) unpublished paper presented for the International Journal of Clinical Legal Education Conference held at Monash University in Melbourne, 28 to 30-11-2018.
  • Van der Merwe SJH & A East Advocacy in clinical legal education: presenting real life cases in real life tribunals (2018) unpublished paper presented for the International Journal of Clinical Legal Education Conference held at Monash University in Melbourne, 28 to 30-11-2018.
  • Van der Merwe SJH Towards empirical validation of theoretical assumptions in Clinical Legal Education (2018) unpublished paper presented at the SU Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Conference at Somerset West, 30 to 31-10-2018.
  • Van der Merwe SJH Inculcating ethics in the LLB curriculum: The question is not why, but how? (2018) umpublished paper presented at the Regional Teaching and Learning Conference of the Law Faculties of UCT, UWC and Stellenbosch University, 13-09-2018.
  • Van der Merwe SJH Advocating for expanded clinical legal education (2018) unpublished paper delivered at the Stellenbosch University Law Clinic Conference in Stellenbosch, 19 – 20-07-2018.
  • Van der Merwe SJH Early Steps in Employing Double Robot Technology in Clinical Legal Education (2018) unpublished paper presented at the 4thWriting Skills in Legal Education Conference in Somerset West, 20 – 21-06-2018.
  • Van der Merwe SJH Rise of the robot lawyers: Employing Double Robot Technology in Clinical Legal Education (2018) presented at the 1st African Digital University Network Colloquium in Stellenbosch, 17 to 18-04-2018.
  • Van der Merwe SJH Whats wrong with the present state of legal reasoning? (2018) delivered at the 3rd International Advocacy Training Council Conference in Stellenbosch, 02 to 03-04-2018.
  • Van der Merwe SJH Changing lives and (occasionally) changing the law: An illustration of the work of University Law Clinics (2017) unpublished paper presented at the Regent Lecture Theatre, Aberdeen University Scotland, 22-11-2017.
  • Van der Merwe SJH Some Reflections on Teaching Legal Skills Through Clinical Legal Education (CLE) (2017) unpublished paper presented at Coventry University England, 15-09-2017.
  • Van der Merwe SJH Changing lives and (occasionally) changing the law: An illustration of the work of University Law Clinics (2017) unpublished paper presented at the Partnerships in Clinical Legal Education Conference at hosted by Coventry University in England, 15 -09-2017.
  • Van der Merwe SJH The present legal challenges in the South African Emolument Attachment Order landscape (2017) unpublished paper presented atthe Dullah Omar Institute Community Engagement Conference at the University of the Western Cape, 2 to 3-08-2017.
  • Van der Merwe SJH A discussion of the legal environment relating to Emolument Attachment Orders (“EAO’s”) before and after The University of Stellenbosch Legal Aid Clinic & 15 Others vs The Minister of Justice and Correctional Services & 17 Others (2016) presented at the 29th Annual Labour Law Conference at Kempton Park Johannesburg, 24 to 25-08-2016.
  • Van der Merwe SJH Failure to discharge.  A discussion of the insufficient legal recourse afforded to judgment debtors in the South African context (2007) unpublished paper delivered at the 5th International Journal of Clinical Legal Education Conference hosted by the University of the Witwatersrand at Johannesburg, 9 to 11-09-2007.

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