Issue Statements – Different Kinds for Different Documents
24 Pages Posted: 19 Jan 2011
Date Written: January 18, 2011
This article offers recommendations for framing issue statements in appellate briefs and other kinds of legal documents. We have formed these recommendations based on published empirical research into issue statements in appellate briefs, a broad survey of the published literature on issue statements, and our combined 40 years of experience practicing law and teaching legal writing. Our recommendations reflect our belief that no lawyer should frame issue statements with a single approach. Each type of document serves a different purpose, is directed to a different audience, and potentially calls for a different approach. In adapting to those different purposes and audiences, lawyers should know the traditional conventions but should choose efficiency, readability, and effectiveness over outmoded conventions.
Keywords: question, question presented, issue, issue statement, single sentence, multiple sentence, under-does-when, whether, deep issue, syllogism, traditional, brief, brief on the merits, question of law, question of fact, memo, trial brief, email, letter, mediation statement
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