Innovating Legal and Business Justice For Kenyans
Access to Online Legal and Business Information Advice and Representation
- Reforms to enable everyone to access digital legal and business services anywhere and offline in real-time
- E-Lawyers (Online Business Lawyers)
- Reforms to create businesses and jobs
Partner(s) information and contact details:
|Name of partner company from Kenya||Name of partner institution|
|Rayness Analytica Limited|
|Name of principal project leader:||Name of secondary project leader:|
|Raymond Nduga||Dorris Tado|
|Telephone number:||Telephone number:|
|+254 716 442 388||+254 721 512 530|
Total Cost: estimated funding requested: US$ 400,000
Background and justification
The Constitution of Kenya 2010 has a progressive Bill of Rights with provisions such as Article 48 that obligates the government to guarantee access to justice by ensuring the cost of justice does not impede its access. This provision is the anchor to legal aid in Kenya. In addition to this provision the Parliament of Kenya enacted the Legal Aid Act to give effect to Article 48 of the Constitution. However, the Legal Aid Act is yet to be fully implemented. Thus a majority of the indigent are unable to exercise their right of access to justice.
The Justice Needs and Satisfaction in Kenya Report, 2017 estimated that between 17.2 and 17.9 million Kenyan citizens had experienced one or more legal problems in the four years preceding the survey noting that 63% of adult Kenyans have encountered a situation in which an accessible, affordable and fair justice process is needed. Crime, land problems, family -related disputes, employment problems and disagreements over money the most frequently occurring legal problems at the time.
The main challenges citizens encounter in government courts as identified in the “Access to Justice in Kenya: experience and perception Report 2020,” included inability to meet costs and fees, inability to be heard by a judge or magistrate, their concerns not being properly addressed, complexity of court processes and procedures, inability to obtain legal counsel or advice and lengthy delays for cases to be heard and decided.
With regard to businesses and employment: the Constitution of Kenya 2010 and Vision 2030 place great emphasis on the role of youth employment in development. Addressed in human rights and economic perspective, youth employment is viewed as leading to full development of the human personality and fundamental to the fulfillment of other rights, freedom and the maintenance of peace and the well-being and economic prosperity of a country. The Constitution of Kenya 2010 gave young Kenyans the legitimate expectation that their fear of unemployment after completing tertiary education had been resolved with the enactment of the National Employment Authority Act, No. 3 of 2016 to actualise the wording and spirit of the Article 55 of the Constitution of Kenya 2010; and yet unemployment remains a major challenge affecting youth across Kenya. Approximately 800,000 Kenyans enter the labour market every year, and youth unemployment is estimated to be as high as 35%, compared to the overall national unemployment rate of 10%. In fact, 80% of unemployed Kenyans are below age 35. Article 43 of the Constitution of Kenya 2010 provides for Economic and Social Rights.
In this context, enhancing the legal and business knowledge awareness among Kenyans has become the major challenge in addressing the legal and business gaps and the injustices in both the legal and business life. Therefore, to close the legal and business justice gap, more need to be done to improve the current system. We need to innovate and bring new services to scale to prevent or resolve justice problems for everybody. Innovative technology is needed to make these services accessible to all strata of society.
The Cost and Procedure to achieve Justice in Kenya
According to the Justice Needs and Satisfaction Survey, one in five Kenyans who encounter a legal problem do not pursue any resolution avenues irrespective of their income status’; and, 48% of those who attempt to settle their legal disputes informally through friends, family, church leaders or elders. The survey also established that 30% of Kenyans from the lowest income group indicated that they did nothing because the other party was more powerful compared to 10% of 10 people in the highest income group. Moreover, lower income Kenyans are also more likely to say that they did not pursue justice because of a lack of money (16%) compared to those in the high-income groups (9%). In the Financial Year 2020/21, 356,997 cases were filed in all courts; 242,457 criminal cases and 114,540 civil cases. By the end of the FY 2020/21, there were 649,112 pending cases in the Judiciary comprising 293,605 criminal cases and 355,507 civil cases.
The court fees assessment schedule provides the following fees for the filing of the respective documents in the relevant proceedings before the specified courts and tribunals.
Downloadable Kenyan Court Fee Asssessment Schedule, PDF
COURT FEE ASSESSMENT SCHEDULE
In late 2012, the Chief Justice asked Law Society of Kenya (LSK) to subject the legal fees structure to public scrutiny, a suggestion the LSK opposed. According to the Advocate’s Act, Cap 16, any advocate who accepts less than the scale fees is liable to a fine of not less than Ksh100,000 ($803) or imprisonment of up to two years.
Under the formal court system, the minimum filing fees for a civil dispute in the Magistrates Courts is Ksh. 2,000 while the minimum instructions fees under the Advocates Remuneration Order, 2014, is Ksh, 10,000 for proceedings in the subordinate courts whose value do not exceed Kshs. 50,000. Advocates now only have an option to charge as per the scale fees as per the rules, charge an hourly rate or enter into agreements with their clients so long as the fees negotiated are not less than Ksh10,000
The regulations prohibit advocates from getting into agreements with clients which allow the former to charge fees at a scale lower than the prescribed fees. Kenyan lawyers have since raised their fees by nearly 50 per cent which is an impediment to access to justice. These rules are unconstitutional. Articles 23 of the Constitution of Kenya stipulate as below:
Enforcement of Bill of Rights:
Every person has the right to institute court proceedings claiming that a right or fundamental freedom in the Bill of Rights has been denied, violated or infringed, or is threatened. 2. In addition to a person acting in their own interest, court proceedings under clause (1) may be instituted by- a. a person acting on behalf of another person who cannot act in their own name; b. a person acting as a member of, or in the interest of, a group or class of persons; c. a person acting in the public interest; or d. an association acting in the interest of one or more of its members. 3. The Chief Justice shall make rules providing for the court proceedings referred to in this Article, which shall satisfy the criteria that- a. the rights of standing provided for in clause (2) are fully facilitated; b. formalities relating to the proceedings, including commencement of the proceedings, are kept to the minimum, and in particular that the court shall, if necessary, entertain proceedings on the basis of informal documentation; c. no fee may be charged for commencing the proceedings; d. the court, while observing the rules of natural justice, shall not be unreasonably restricted by procedural technicalities; and e. an organisation or individual with particular expertise may, with the leave of the court, appear as a friend of the court. 4. The absence of rules contemplated in clause (3) does not limit the right of any person to commence court proceedings under this Article, and to have the matter heard and determined by a court.
In addition, Article 159 of the Kenyan Constitution, 2010 states that:
Judicial authority is derived from the people and vests in, and shall be exercised by, the courts and tribunals established by or under this Constitution. 2. In exercising judicial authority, the courts and tribunals shall be guided by the following principles- . justice shall be done to all, irrespective of status; b. justice shall not be delayed; c. alternative forms of dispute resolution including reconciliation, mediation, arbitration and traditional dispute resolution mechanisms shall be promoted, subject to clause(3); d. justice shall be administered without undue regard to procedural technicalities; and e. the purpose and principles of this Constitution shall be protected and promoted. 3. Traditional dispute resolution mechanisms shall not be used in a way that- a. contravenes the Bill of Rights; b. is repugnant to justice and morality or results in outcomes that are repugnant to justice or morality; or c. is inconsistent with this Constitution or any written law.
From the reading of the above, we can only denote that notwithstanding the Constitutional provisions that make access to justice a fundamental human rights, the sad reality is that it is a mirage to most Kenyans. It is only through innovative justice using technology that the gap will be bridged for the benefit of the 53 million Kenyans irrespective of their status in the society.
The overall objective of the project is to enable all Kenyan to access legal and business services online by offering advice and representation with follow-up services supported by technology, to empower the youth with legal and business knowledge by guiding them on the use of the correct businesses templates to be used for any type of businesses thus, creating sustainable businesses, and, in the long term, to attract investors who will help create 5000 jobs within seven years.
The Innovative Approach
With over 70,000 freely downloadable and high quality customisable smart templates/forms that people can use as often as they have need, and flexible enough to allow for changes without leaving them exposed; the company’s website offers a one-stop legal and business service centre with 98% of the website’s content being informational on areas: Legal, Business, Real Estate, Personal, Arts and Media. Rayness Analytica is revolutionising the legal and business industry. With cutting-edge technology, we can provide unparalleled services to our clients without subjecting them to lawyers’ mandatory high fees. To demonstrate how it works:
From End User Point;
follow the instruction,
- Click the following website link, www.raynessanalytica.com.
- Once on the website’s homepage, an ONLINE brown chat box will appear at the right bottom end of screen;
- click on the chat tab, insert NAME, EMAIL and PHONE NUMBER; and
- proceed when ready, letting us know the issue(s) and eliciting HELP from our lawyers and business specialists.
- We may also be contacted via the following, the “QUICK CONTACT” form at the bottom of the website or the green Whatsapp button at the left bottom end of the screen.
After we receive a completed enquiry form, identifying the issue and providing points-of-contact via our messaging system or email, our aim is to revert within 24 hours. For example, if someone has an issue that should be litigated, we will simply guide them to the correct link with free customisable pleading templates and information, like this: https://raynessanalytica.com/product/plaint-templates/. The templates here cover all conceivable areas of legal action in Kenya.
With the above, any literate Kenyan should be able to use the website and access legal and business information and customisable documents freely without physically going to any lawyer’s office. But when users cannot do the legal or business paperwork themselves and wish to engage our expertise, we offer premium services.
For our premium paid online services, one may order via the ORDER NOW page where we have listed the prices and type of services in the following categories: 1) Analytics, 2) Contracts, 3) Employment, 4) Finance, 5) Forms and Reports, 6) Human Resource, 7) Job Interview, 8) Law Practice, 9) Lease Agreements, 10) Letters, 11) Marketing, 12) Marriage, 13) Notices and Letters, 14) Operations, 15) Project Management, 16) Property Management, 17) Real Estate Transactions, 18) Rental Application, 19) Time Management.
For example, if those with a litigation issue want to engage our services to customise the pleadings for them (without our lawyers representing them), then they will pay online, via this link: https://raynessanalytica.com/product/plaint-drafting/
The premium services sections are designed in a way that for users to make a legal or business request order, they must fill in the following: name, country, phone number, email, notes about the requested order and with an option to upload files if need be. The price of the services is already listed and automated. Once done with filling their details, they then tick to agree to the website’s terms and conditions which then allows them to place an order and proceed to checkout point for payment via different payment modes like Visa, Mastercard or Mobile Money. That can be practically tested via this link: https://raynessanalytica.com/product/plaint-drafting/
Once a request order is placed successfully, the user/client/customer will get an email confirmation in their email. Likewise, we will get email confirmation of the same on our company’s email, notifying us about the order details. We will then work on it and deliver in record-short time. Unlike the physical law firms, where a clients must physically visit a brick and mortar office to get access to his/her file, our clients’ files can be accessed online by the clients using their account credentials via this link, https://raynessanalytica.com/wp-login.php. To learn more of the sectors that the templates cover see here; Legal and Business Templates.
The company’s online payment system uses DPO Group – https://dpogroup.com/ – which we consider to be one of the safest and most credible online payment companies in Africa for the safety of our website users’ credit and debit cards.
To demonstrate how it works,
From the Company’s Team Members Point; The company’s team members all have an installed app called Tawk.to on their smartphones or laptops. It is the app behind the website’s online live chat tab. When anyone visits the site, the team members are alerted to the specific website pages being visited. When the user sends a message, it will pop on the gadgets of the team members and one of the team members will always respond to it as soon as possible, usually, in a matter of minutes.
As the late Senator Bobby Kennedy said in his June 1966 commencement address at the University of Cape Town:
“It is from numberless diverse acts of courage and belief that human history is shaped. Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and, crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current which can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.”
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