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Legal Writing Is Not What It Should Be

Southern University Law Review, Vol. 37, p. 1, 2009

24 Pages Posted: 19 Aug 2010  

Wayne Schiess

University of Texas School of Law

Date Written: 2009

Abstract

This Article presents and discusses nine reasons that legal writing is not as good as it should be. The reasons include inadequate preparation in college and law school, over-reliance on forms, complacency, a misguided sense of professionalism, and time pressure. The Article concludes by offering four recommendations: continue to improve law-school legal-writing programs and begin including legal drafting and plain English, train new lawyers in editing, require legal-writing training in continuing legal education, and encourage lawyers to take more individual responsibility for improvement.

Keywords: Legal Writing, Style, Self Expression, Undergraduate, Knowledge Telling, Legal Analysis, Legal Drafting, Judicial Opinions, Time Pressure, Forms, Revising, Editing, Over-Formality, Complacent, Mediocre

Suggested Citation

Schiess, Wayne, Legal Writing Is Not What It Should Be (2009). Southern University Law Review, Vol. 37, p. 1, 2009. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1661130

Wayne Schiess (Contact Author)

University of Texas School of Law ( email )

727 East Dean Keeton Street
Austin, TX 78705
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.utexas.edu/law

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