Category: TLC

Serendipitous Simplicity

Simplicity means is best described using this definition of plain language A communication is in plain language if its wording, structure, and design are so clear that the intended audience can easily find what they need, understand what they find, and use that information. Source: International Plain Language Federation So

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Disastrous Disputes

Weirdly, avoiding disputes does not seem to be a key factor driving the drafting of contracts (although PPC2000 might be an exception). However, given the rising cost and time involved in resolving disputes, as well as the damage to reputations and the sustainability of a company, it should be. My

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Your Contract Pains

I love the idea that we could create contracts that ordinary people will read, understand and use. Verity White’s Secret of Productive Contracts is another step in the right direction. Verity’s focus is on paperless contracts to speed up the contracting process. I was both delighted and a little bemused

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Contractual Eloquence

I have been reading The Elements of Eloquence by Mark Forsyth (author of the Etymologicon) in which he explains and illustrates some of the figures of rhetoric. I was struck by how many of these are beloved of lawyers and contract writers, without their users even being aware that they

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Process of Writing a Readable Contract

Now you are convinced of the benefits of readable contracts [read more], this post describes a process for writing those contracts with ideas from ‘The Art of Readable Writing’ (1949) by Rudolph Flesch. Effective Writing It is common ground that the [contract] in this case would win no drafting prizes

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The Art of Writing a Readable Contract

In ‘the Art of Readable Writing’ (1949) Rudolph Flesch provides advice that applies to writers of legal documents as well as blog posts, books, and other media. Here are some of his tips, with relevant legal examples, to help you write contracts that others can read, understand and use. Benefits

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Apply Common Sense

When a court or tribunal interprets your carefully crafted contract, it doesn’t ask your opinion. It reviews the written terms to analyse ‘what a reasonable person having all the [parties’ then] background knowledge… would have understood… the language in the contract to mean‘. As they are not mystics, the courts

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Edit ruthlessly

My 10 tips to improve your legal writing recommend you spend time ruthlessly crossing through, deleting or rewording your text. Whenever you can shorten a sentence, do. And one always can. The best sentence? The shortest. Gustave Flaubert You need to edit your text to create a document which suits

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Contracts Win Prizes for Clarity

Contracts win prizes, although not in this case… It is common ground that the Deed of Variation in this case would win no drafting prizes for precision or clarity. It included errors … which are acknowledged by both sides, and it also struggled to convey the essential agreement reached between

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