Joseph Kimble, Judith D. Fischer, Legal Writing, Legal Writing Prof Blog, Legalese, The Green Bag
Lawyers Are Poor Drafters, by Judith D. Fischer, Legal Writing Prof Blog
Most lawyers are poor drafters, writes Professor Joseph Kimble of Western Michigan University-Cooley Law School. In a recent article, Kimble identifies two key reasons for this: law schools have tended to neglect legal drafting, and lawyers often mimic the antiquated language in form books and poorly drafted statutes. To illustrate the problem, Kimble offers a court order prepared by lawyers and judges at a recent symposium. Displaying the order and his revised version side by side, he points out, among other things, that the original has 125 words more than the revision; the original includes several legalese phrases, such as pursuant to; and the original includes unnecessary cross-references. For his full analysis, see You Think Lawyers Are Good Drafters? in the autumn 2014 issue of The Green Bag.
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