South Africa patent attorneys have a qualification from the South African Institute of Intellectual Property Law. They are bound by a code of ethics that is administered by the Council of the Institute and are members of that institute. Patent attorneys in South Africa differ from other attorneys in that they must also have an engineering or science degree as well as their law degree. This permits them to understand and interpret the drawings and descriptions that have to accompany a patent application.
A Novelty Search in South Africa can be a long and drawn out affair, and it is always a good idea to have a Patent Attorney or Agent carry out the search on your behalf.