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South African Law

Finding Cases on a topic

The following strategies will help you find cases on a topic.

1. Secondary Sources

To find significant / leading cases on a topic, use the following secondary sources - they will discuss the leading cases extensively and have already done the work for you!

  • find South African print and e-books on the topic by using the catalogue.
  • find journal articles on the topic by using the journal indexes listed on the Journals tab in this guide.

2. Cases Databases

To look for leading cases, use:

  • Recent cases at the highest court possible for the jurisdiction; and
  • Cases that have been followed or considered in a significant number of other cases.

To search more extensively for eg: all cases on your topic, use keyword searches in SAFLII (open access)  which contain the full text of all available unreported decisions (many of which have been subsequently reported) from South African courts and tribunals. The decisions of individual courts can be searched by keywords.The search database can also be used to search all South African courts simultaneously.  

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