Anyone who has ever had to sign a finance agreement with a bank to purchase goods will know how that shiver of new-buyer’s excitement rapidly transforms to a shiver of dread when confronted with the hefty volume of terms and conditions that you are expected to sign before the money can be released. If you’re a university graduate and fluent in the language in which the credit agreement is written, you would no doubt find that reading the myriad of terms is a chore to say the least. If reading cannot be listed as one of your favourite hobbies, this chore becomes somewhat more tedious. Reading a contract written in a language not your own? There’s a challenge. Now let’s up the ante a bit: what if a man walks into a used-car dealership and wants to buy a car on finance. He’s gainfully employed. He has the requisite cash deposit available. His credit record is good. His income comfortably exceeds his expenses. Every bank’s dream customer. Let’s face it, with the current economic climate, this pool of dream customers is rapidly dwindling. He selects his new-used car, his credit application is approved, and the obligatory tome of terms is placed into his hands. Just one teensy little problem: he’s a functionally illiterate Zulu speaker who doesn’t understand a word of English. Read More.....

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Previously, in Employment & the Recognised Retirement Age – Part I

(Missed part I? Never fear – Click here!)

Being a diligent, law-abiding company, the employer has dotted all the i’s and crossed all the t’s. Or, more specifically, has recorded the noble age of 60 as being the official retirement age, in both the employee’s Employment Contract, and, for good measure, in the company’s Policies and Procedures. The whole department is all-a-twitter as the finishing touches are finalised for the “surprise” 60th birthday-slash-retirement party. Already the date has had to be changed – twice. The original date clashed with the birthday boy’s annual trip to the coast, and moving the date of the party proved easier than asking the organisers to reschedule the Comrades Marathon. The second date that was mooted fell slap-bang in the middle of his wife’s birthday present to him: a trip to Tanzania so that he could fulfill his life-long dream to climb Kilimanjaro. Read More.....

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