Painting with Print: Incorporating Concepts of Typographic and Layout Design into the Text of Legal Writing Documents

45 Pages Posted: 13 Oct 2006 Last revised: 26 Nov 2014

Ruth Anne Robbins

Rutgers Law School

Abstract

This article seeks to help attorneys do good deeds for their readers by using the look of the words themselves to create a visually effective textual "picture" in lawyering documents. The arguments and suggestions for better textual visuals are not opinion but are grounded in science. The article examines interdisciplinary research and also looks at accepted practices in graphic design. The research helps explain that principles of document design should not be considered "optional" or rejected as merely subjective speculation. In fact, most of the accepted principles of document design are grounded in scientific study. The article also includes an appendix charting the format rules of the state and federal appellate courts,along with the answer to whether an attorney can employ the synthesized design techniques in a particular jurisdiction.

Keywords: legal writing, visual, fonts, persuasion, lawyering

Suggested Citation

Robbins, Ruth Anne, Painting with Print: Incorporating Concepts of Typographic and Layout Design into the Text of Legal Writing Documents. Journal of the Association of Legal Writing Directors, Vol. 2, p. 108, 2004. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=918526

Ruth Anne Robbins (Contact Author)

Rutgers Law School ( email )

NJ
United States

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