LawProse Lessons #73 & #74

Lesson # 73 What is the biggest mistake that lawyers make in the writing process? ANSWER: Starting to write before they’ve figured out precisely what the message is. As a result, the writing tends to be long-winded, meandering, repetitious, and unfocused. For tips on adopting a sensible method for writing, see these sources: Garner on …

LawProse Lessons #73 & #74 Read More »

LawProse Lessons #71 & #72

Lesson # 71 What is the most astonishing usage error committed by a majority of lawyers?ANSWER: Misunderstanding that the phrase just deserts (/di-ZURTS/) is so spelled — as opposed to the erroneous *just desserts. This word desert (pronounced, we reiterate, /di-ZURT/) is the noun corresponding to deserve. The Supreme Court of the United States has used the …

LawProse Lessons #71 & #72 Read More »

LawProse Lessons #67 & #68

LawProse Lesson #67 What’s the most frequent and serious mistake in brief-writing and motion-writing? Answer: Failing to frame the deep issues on page 1 — so that anyone, anyone, will understand the essential legal problems to be solved. It should be a dispassionate but persuasive statement of the issues. For instruction on precisely how to …

LawProse Lessons #67 & #68 Read More »

LawProse Lessons #69 & #70

LawProse Lesson #69 How should point headings be formatted?ANSWER: Please attend to this. Ideally, they’re complete sentences that are single-spaced, boldfaced, and capitalized only according to normal rules of capitalization — that is, neither all-caps nor initial caps. Even if court rules require headings to be double-spaced, all the other rules nevertheless apply. All-caps headings betoken …

LawProse Lessons #69 & #70 Read More »

Scroll to Top