Jonathan Witts-Hewinson is a director in our Dispute Resolution: Litigation, Arbitration and Mediation practice. He has extensive experience in relation to arbitration proceedings and other forms of alternate dispute resolution. Jonathan's areas of expertise are commercial litigation, intellectual property disputes, insolvency law, product liability, unfair/unlawful competition, arbitration and alternate dispute resolution. He is a CEDR qualified mediator.



  • BA LLB, University of Stellenbosch
  • Year of admission: 1985


  • Law Society of the Northern Provinces
  • Member of the management committee of the Arbitration Foundation of Southern Africa
  • Member of the Steering Committee of Africa ADR


  • Represented an international motor corporation in a dispute arising from an assembly agreement with a third party motor corporation.
  • Represents one of the major construction companies listed on the JSE.
  • Advised a major South African Bank on removal of directors of a subsidiary company in connection with fraud and numerous breaches of good corporate governance.
  • Represented a leading South African bank in securing its intellectual property rights (and more particularly copyright) relevant to computer programmes written for its banking systems (where the contractors employed to assist with the writing of those programmes, sought to develop similar software for their independent financial gain).
  • Enforced the copyright of a medical distribution company in respect of its software systems against a third party who sought to develop similar software to market to our client’s competitors.
  • Resisted an application brought against a JSE listed corporate where the applicant sought to suggest that an interactive booking system had been developed in breach of both patented rights as well as copyright (unsuccessfully) contended for by the applicant.
  • Represented a multi-national soft drinks distributor, for several decades, in resisting product liability claims brought both in relation to alleged impurities as well as bottle or container failures.
  • Represented the bottler and distributor of a well-known mineral water in proceedings against Carte Blanche (a television magazine programme) in an action for damages following wrongful statements made on a flighted programme.
  • Represented an international motor corporation in a dispute arising from an assembly agreement with a third party motor corporation.
  • Pursued actions against former directors of a subsidiary of a company listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, guilty of abusing their positions of authority and their fiduciary obligations to their employer.
  • Represented a leading JSE listed mining company (operating within the platinum industry) where attempts were (unsuccessfully) advanced by third parties aimed at undermining our client's new order mineral rights (having value amounting to many billions of Rands).

Market recognition

  • Chambers Global 2014 ranked Jonathan in Band 3 Dispute Resolution. In 2013 Jonathan was ranked in Band 4. In 2008 to 2009 Jonathan was recommended for Dispute Resolution. Chambers comments: "Jonathan Witts-Hewinson is a skilled arbitrator, market sources agree "he also advises clients on insolvency law."
  • The Legal 500 EMEA series 2009 to 2010 commented that Jonathan is a "renowned all-round litigator and frequent counsel to major corporates and financial institutions." In 2012 to 2014 Jonathan is named as one of therecommended lawyers in Dispute Resolution.
  • Practical Law CompanyPLC Which Lawyer? 2006 to 2012 endorsed Jonathan for his expertise in Dispute Resolution, Restructuring and Insolvency, and Construction.
  • Expert Guides: Guide to the World's Leading Lawyers 2009 to 2011 listed Jonathan among South Africa's pre-eminent litigation lawyers in Litigation and Emerging Markets.
  • Best Lawyers International 2008 - 2014 South Africa listed Jonathan in Arbitration and Mediation as well as Litigation.


Jonathan began his career as a candidate attorney at Cliffe Dekker and Todd (now Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr) in 1983. In 1985, he was appointed as an associate and promoted to senior associate in 1986. In 1987 Jonathan became a director.


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