Saturday, April 23, 2005

On less is more in legal writing

This George's post talks about the joys of whacking a piece of legal writing to make it shorter.

One of my favorite ways: whack all of the adjectives. The adjectives are usually the most childish, least professional parts of the brief. I often laugh at the adjectives chosen by my opponents and sometimes make a little tally of them. When I read a brief addressed to me with a bunch of bad words like "absurd," "disingenuous," "frivolous," "baseless," and the like, I think that the opponent might be right but he can't write - name-calling is no substitute for analysis.

(I must confess, however, to one use of the word "bogus" in a recently-filed brief.)

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