Some tips on getting started with legal writing and analysis. Navigating this Blog There are countless ways to style legal writing. In this blog, you will find various approaches to legal writing that I have found to be effective. Take it all with a grain of salt.
The first half focuses on general rules of argument and brief writing, while the second is centered around oral argument. I found a ton of practical tips in here and it looks like a dipped this book in highlighter because of all the salient points I wanted to outline later— which you can obtain here 21 pages.
Here are six tips on legal writing and argumentation from the first half that I found particularly useful. Clearing the Underbrush and Making Space. To most effectively deal with this scenario, Garner and Scalia instruct that you quickly demolish this point at the outset—or clear the underbrush as they term it—before you move into your argument.
This clearing process helps create space for your persuasive points, which will allow the legal writing analysis and oral argument tips to be more receptive to your principal argument.
They do offer a word of caution: The authors note that there are opponents to this view. These disagreeing experts say you should arrange your points just as the appellant did no matter what. While the arguments might better engage the judge and be easier to follow when styled in the same order, there are two reasons not to do this: Choose Only Your Strongest Arguments For the careful writer, the hardest thing after starting is stopping.
Antonin Scalia and Bryan A. Garner Utilizing the kitchen sink approach in asserting arguments is detrimental to your case.
By arguing every point under the sun, you make the judge less inclined to believe your stronger ones by burdening him with weaker ones. Understand The Hierarchy Of Persuasive Authority And The Contexts That Persuade Scalia and Garner instruct that the most persuasive authority is the case where the party situated like your client lost in the trial court but won in reversal.
When you cite a case with this context, you make this implicit argument to the court: Here, the implicit argument is: Webber, The Power Trial Method. Be on the lookout for these persuasive situations when seeking out citations and make the consequences known, implicitly, to the judge.
Begin With The End In Mind—Themes and Theories It is important that you, the advocate, clearly understand the overall objective of the brief and the destination you wish to reach.
Scalia and Garner advise that the best way to do this is to bring out your themes and case theory early, from the question presented to the conclusion.
The theory should be able to be presented in the form of a series of syllogisms that establish that the desired conclusion is necessarily true, given the controlling legal principles and the presented evidence and assuming the truth of the inferences laid out.
A theme is the explanation of the facts which shows the moral force is on your side—e. Massachusetts Accident Company, Mass. So, a theory focuses on the logical while a theme focuses on the emotional and the moral. Revolving your brief around these preliminary, foundational concepts help guide the court to the outcome you desire.
To begin with the end in mind means to begin with a clear understanding of your destination. You should have your case theory and theme—and the end they serve—in mind before you start briefing.
Cooper Scalia and Garner say that unless the rules of your court forbid stating a question presented, and they know none that do, you should do so religiously.
They explain that many lawyers fail to appreciate that the result of a case rests on what the court understands the question presented to be. You want to state these question presented in a way that supports your theory of the case and leads to the outcome you want.
And to do this you must find the premise that pulls the court towards your desired rule and then explicitly state that premise in your issue. You should break up this deep issue into separate sentences totaling no more than 75 words. The first sentences follow a chronological order, providing a mini-narrative of your case.
From this mini-story comes the question to be decided.
Moreover, the effect of highlighting the issues and conclusions in your own briefing process is threefold: Explore using a question presented at the outset of your brief to stack the deck.Legal-writing courses, which culminate in writing a moot court brief and conducting a moot court oral argument, teach students to think like lawyers, a skill fundamental to practicing law and a necessary attribute to the good.
Writing a winning legal argument can often be the most discovery, oral argument, trial presentation, etc., are unimportant, approaches, strategies and tips for developing and writing winning legal arguments.
It looks at several important steps in preparing to. version of which appeared as Legal Research, Legal Writing, and Legal Analysis: Putting Law School into Practice, 29 Stetson L. Rev. (). The current version uses fewer footnotes to make the Article more accessible to new law students, who are the primary audience.
1. The target audience for this Article is beginning law students. Aug 18, · › Ten Tips for Persuasive Oral Argument The first and best way to prepare for oral argument is actually to author the appellate brief yourself.
It . All first-year students participate in a Legal Research and Writing course that involves training in legal research, legal writing, legal reasoning and analysis, and oral advocacy.
Experienced full-time faculty, or the equivalent, teach both the legal research and the legal writing components of the course. by: Anya Richard Coming into law school, I knew that legal writing and oral advocacy were two key aspects to being a well-rounded lawyer.
It was not until I had to face my fear of public speaking during my Legal Practice Skills oral argument assignment, however, that I realized that it is impossible to truly.