Unanswered Questions in Two Court Cases Lead to Research for Master of Laws Degree

LLM in Maritime Law cum laude graduate and admitted attorney Ms Amy Gevers says unanswered questions in two court cases she was involved in while practising as an attorney led to her doing research on them for her degree.

Gevers, who is currently a law researcher at the Office of the Chief Justice, hopes her study titled: Gone Overbroad? Critically Examining the Classification of Maritime Claims by South African Courts, will benefit future litigants who want to know whether their claim falls within the definition of “maritime claim” in the Admiralty Jurisdiction Regulation Act of 1983.

‘The aim of my research was to ascertain whether the case law offered any guiding principles to the classification of maritime claims in hard cases,’ explained Gevers.

The study, supervised by Dr Vishal Surbun, involved critically analysing the courts’ reasoning in several important cases that dealt with the definition of “maritime claim”.

‘The more I researched the subject matter, the more passionate I became about the topic,’ said Gevers.

With law running in her family – her father is an advocate while her husband is a Law academic – Gevers is excited about using her newly acquired knowledge for personal and professional growth.

‘My family is thrilled. I believe that having a master’s degree is a real advantage because it demonstrates an ability to think critically which is an essential skill in any legal career.’

Words: Thandiwe Jumo

Photograph: Supplied