Writing for Litigators:
Essentials Of Persuasive Writing
Recorded April 17, 2014
12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. EST
Available Media Formats:
WHY YOU SHOULD ATTEND
Effective persuasive writing is essential for litigators, whose role is to convince decision makers of a client’s position. In this program, you will learn practical strategies for structuring a clear, effective brief or other persuasive document. We will focus on brief writing, but will also cover other types of persuasive writing, such as letters and memoranda.
WHAT YOU WILL LEARN
Through examples and exercises, we will cover the key organizational components of a persuasive legal document: the preliminary statement, the statement of facts, and the argument section. Within each component, we will identify strategies for (1) writing persuasively and logically and (2) avoiding common weaknesses, including unfocused preliminary statements, argumentative facts, and disorganized argument sections.
Strategies for structuring powerful briefs and other persuasive documents, including:
- drafting a compelling, focused introduction or preliminary statement
- telling an effective story in the statement of facts
- organizing arguments affirmatively, even in opposition and reply briefs
This program is geared towards all lawyers whose practice includes persuasive writing, whether in the context of litigation, arbitration or administrative law practice. The program teaches essential skills that serve as a useful refresher for lawyers at all levels.
Preliminary statement or introduction
- Link to the reader.
- Assert your bottom line: What you want and why you are entitled to it.
- Create a clear roadmap.
- Don’t impugn your adversary’s motive.
Statement of facts
- Create a narrative.
- Use headings and subheadings.
- Roadmap complex facts.
- Maintain credibility: avoid argument.
- Transition to legal argument.
Argument section (25 minutes)
- Roadmap legal argument section and complex subsections.
- Make headings consistent with roadmaps.
- Stick to CRAAC structure: Conclusion, Rule, Application, Anticipation,
- Argue affirmatively, even in opposing briefs.
- Use internal roadmaps to organize information.
- Use quotations effectively:
- When quoting, lead in with a preview.
- Integrate shorter quotes seamlessly.
- Create emphasis within sentences.
Dianne Rosky, Principal, Rosky Legal Education
16 West 23rd Street, 4th Floor, New York, NY 10010