If you didn’t know it already, it’s international legal writing and drafting week, a national designation that we fabricated and confidently announced. In celebration, however, we’re posting short nuggets of legal writing advice, following up from our prior nuggets. Like submliminal hashtagging. Or optimizing with Yiddish. Or how to use powerfully meaningless phrases. As you can tell, we’re experts. And we have lots to say during the coming exciting week of international legal drafting. First up:
Aggressive. Period. Placement.
Aggressive period placement in your legal writing is akin to using clever subliminal hashtags, but without that annoying number symbol, which typically makes a judge think #WTF? But, as with subliminal hashtagging, do not overuse this technique. As a general rule, aim for about three “pods” of aggressively placed periods for every ten pages of a brief or memo. Any more than that and you’ll be seen as affectatious and flirty. Way. Unbeast. Any less and the judge’s law clerk will think you are a newb, which you are. Two examples:
Plaintiff’s argument that he is entitled to summary judgment on the issue of overtime wages is a rambling diatribe against normal business practices for those in the fashion industry. It is a Red. Cross. Disaster.
In the instant case, the Eighth Circuit has held that the state may forcibly inject a nondangerous citizen with mind altering antipsychotic drugs for the sole purpose of making him competent to stand trial on fraud charges. Gotta. Dig. Justice.
Oh, in case you were wondering, here’s a quick breakdown of some of our popular legal hashtaggage and how those can be reintrepreted into pods of aggressive periods.
Judgment. Totally. Denied.
Isn’t. That. Special.
Not. Fucking. Kidding.
Chalk. It. Up. (alt. Whoomp. Dere. ItIz.)