Organizing Legal Documents by urf82008


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									Introduction to Law
         Introduction to
         Developing Legal
General Examples of Legal Writing

   Planning and Advisory Documents

   Agreements and private transactions

   Legislative documents

   Litigation-related documents
Principles that govern all legal writing

   Accuracy in legal research
   Accuracy in legal analysis
   Awareness of purpose & audience
   Command of English language
   Understanding & using proper format
   Sensitivity to procedural context & remedy
   Compliance with ethical standards
Advocacy Brief

   The legal paper you file with the court to
    support your client’s position on a given

   Purpose = to persuade the court that the
    law and facts support relief in your
    client’s favor
Developing and Organizing Legal

  Organize to persuade.
    Make your organization obvious!

    A good legal argument has two components:
       Conclusion
       Support for the conclusion
Arguing to persuade

   Persuasiveness depends on level of authority

   Must set out your conclusion and then
    systematically walk listener through the “proof”
    –   By use of valid/legitimate authority
    –   By paying attention to the words you pick to express
        your argument persuasively
    –   By setting out every step of your logic so that your
        conclusion becomes inevitable.
Structure of the Argument

  –   Position (conclusion)
  –   Reasons
          Rule
          Application of law to fact
  –   Counter-argument
  –   Response
Points to remember with Persuasive

   Strongest Issues and Arguments first
    –   If issues and arguments are equal, then place most
        significant argument first
   Try to create a theme
   Limit contentions to those that have a chance of
   Address client’s position first (before refuting
   Make organization obvious
Introduction to Law

         Ethics in Advocacy
Rules of Professional Conduct

A lawyer is forbidden to knowingly make a false
  statement of law or fact to a court. (Model Rule

   Law =
         Must inform the court of legal authority in the controlling
          jurisdiction known to the lawyer to be directly adverse to
          the position of the lawyer’s client and not disclosed by
          opposing counsel.

   Fact =
         Facts must be supported by the record
         Facts must be uncontroverted or undisputed
Procedural Rules

       We note that the appellee’s brief is not in compliance with
 Nebraska Ct. R. of Prac. [rule numbers omitted]. The
 appellee’s brief does not contain an assertion that he agrees
 with appellant’s statement of facts, nor does the brief set forth a
 recitation of facts annotated to the record. In addition, appellee
 asserts facts on cross-appeal that were excluded by the trial
 court and are not part of the record on appeal. In short,
 appellee’s brief is of little assistance in deciding this appeal.
 We caution that the failure of a party to submit a brief
 which complies with our own rules may result in our
 treating the case as one in which no brief has been filed by
 that party.
 Caniglia v. Caniglia, 1993 Neb. App. WL7676 (Jan. 19, 1993) citing State v.
 Biernacki, 265 N.W.2d 732 (Neb. 1991); Grubbs v. Kula, 325 N.W.2d 835 (Neb.
Advocate in compliance with ethical
and procedural rules

   Maintain your credibility

   Strengthen your argument

   Avoid court reprimands and/or sanctions

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