Corporate and Commercial Law

The firm deals with all aspects of Corporate and Commercial Law, including mergers and acquisitions, formation and registration of all kinds of business entities, incentive schemes, share participation trusts, employee contracts, leases, sale and lease backs, stock exchange listings, joint ventures, partnership, syndicates, corporate finance, project finance and commercial property development.

Property & Real Estate

The firm has vast experience in all areas involving property and real estate law. The Property Law department can assist with all aspects thereof, from the drafting of sale agreements all the way through to the registration of property transfers, mortgage and notarial bonds and bond cancellations. The firm is on the attorney panels’ of several of the largest banks and finance houses operating in Southern Africa. This department can assist with due diligences pertaining to property transactions. This department can also attend to ancillary real estate matters for example property consolidations and subdivisions. The professionals involved have experience in drafting and negotiating various property leases from simple residential leases to technically involved aeronautical leases. The department can perform all legal work involved in the establishment of townships and the opening of township and sectional title registers.

Mining Specialists

The firm is renowned as one of the country’s leading mining law specialists. With a reputation built on more than 100 years of experience, Cranko Karp is strategically positioned to provide due diligence and counsel prior to, during and subsequent to the purchase of resources. As the modern demand for Africa’s mineral resources grows, there is a growing need for highly competent and experienced legal counsel. The firm is adept at being able to advise on all related matters. In addition, Cranko Karp has structured a number of Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) transactions in South Africa through specialised application of the South African Mining Charter.

Diamond Law

The South African diamond industry is one of the most regulated in the world.

Over the years the firm has gained extensive and invaluable experience and know-how pertaining to such regulatory framework. The firm has at one stage or another been engaged by most of the South African De Beers sightholders and many of the foreign sightholders.

This knowledge and expertise has enabled the firm to offer either specific legal services or comprehensive turnkey services for the formation of diamond entities in Southern Africa. These services include without limitation; locating suitable premises, negotiating leases with the landlords, registering corporate entities, opening bank accounts, structuring companies so as to comply with the relevant legislation including the Mineral & Petroleum Resources Development Act No 28 of 2002, the Diamonds Act No 56 of 1986 and Black Economic Empowerment Legislation, drafting the necessary agreements e.g. sale of shares and shareholders agreements, liaising with auditors and compiling, submitting and obtaining approval of the relevant diamond licences from the Regulators.

The firm has also represented many clients in disputes within and outside of the industry. Michael has on numerous occasions acted as a mediator and arbitrator in disputes between both local and international members of the industry.

The firm has regularly represented the South African Diamond Producers Organisation which is comprised of approximately 250 Diamond producers / miners operating in South Africa.

Dispute Resolution

This department deals with most fields of dispute resolution from High Court litigation to Mediation and Arbitration before the Arbitration Foundation of South Africa. The firm has also represented various clients in dispute forums overseas. Most of the disputes revolve around commercial matters however the firm is in a unique position in that it regularly represents parties in proceedings brought before the Jewish ecclesiastical courts (The Beth Din).

Trusts and Estates

This department is primarily responsible for the administration of deceased estates. The department also advises on estate planning including the drafting of wills. This department’s services include the drafting, formation and registration of various kinds of trusts with the Master of the High Court. These trusts vary from Family trusts (created during the lifetime of a person), Will trusts (created in terms of a deceased person’s will), Employee share incentive trusts, Charitable trusts, Educational trusts and the like. The department also deals with the relevant court applications for the appointment of curators to the estates’ of persons who are unable to manage their own affairs, for various reasons, for example those with mental incapacities and the like.

Exchange Control

Due to the firm’s extensive involvement in Mining Law it has also acquired a vast amount of experience and knowledge in connection with Exchange Control and the making of the various applications to the Reserve Bank. Michael Karp represented the South African Reserve Bank at the CBI conference in London when he delivered a paper on various aspects of Exchange Control in South Africa. The late President Nelson Mandela opened the Conference.