Legal Writing 101: A Few Techniques and Tips for Consideration

From drafting memorandums to prepping appellate briefs, attorneys need to hone their legal writing skills daily. The main goal of writing assignments are to present your position persuasively to effectively advance your position with your intended audience or objectively present relevant facts and case law to educate your audience on a particular topic.

The Young Lawyer Editorial Board at provides a few key tips to improve a lawyer’s legal writing skills.

General Techniques

  • -Understand your target audience. Ensure your writing style is appropriately tailored to the intended audience. Remember that you are writing for your audience, rather than yourself. 
  • -Start as early as possible. The drafting process often requires multiple drafts and revisions, including time for proofing and editing. 
  • -Prepare an outline identifying the main points of discussion for the writing task. 
  • -Lead with a succinct introduction or executive summary to state the purpose of your writing.
  • -Use section headings liberally to guide the focus and flow of your writing. 
  • -Be concise. 
  • -Avoid inflammatory statements about opposing counsel.
  • -Avoid burying the court with unnecessary and duplicative information such as irrelevant exhibits and duplicitous material that can distract from the main conclusion.
  • -Do not overlook the importance of formatting and typography. 

Are you interested in learning more tips on legal writing? Read more in this article.

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