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Legal Writing, 4th Edition

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Legal Writing, 4th Edition By Lisa Webley

Author Lisa Webley
Publication Date Mar, 2019
ISBN 9781543812138


Legal Writing guides students comprehensively through this vital legal skill and addresses a range of assessment methods from exam questions to final essays and problem answers. It considers how to deconstruct essay  and problem questions and how to conduct and apply legal research to answer set questions.

Lisa Webley explains how to reference others' work clearly and correctly, making this book a useful tool for students concerned about issues of plagiarism. It also focuses on how to develop critical thinking and communicate legal arguments, with both good and bad examples of written work considered and discussed in the text.

Legal Writing is particularly useful for undergraduate students, especially at the beginning of degree studies, and for GDL and CPE students too.

This fully revised fourth edition includes:

Guidance on the avoidance of plagiarism including examples of poor practice and best practice.

Worked examples throughout the text, including guidance on deciphering essay questions in exams and coursework, along with additional examples from across the legal curriculum on the companion website.

An improved companion website with increased guidance for revision to allow students to test their progress and further engage with the topics in the book.

Clearly written and easy to use, Legal Writing enables students to fully engage with essay and exam writing as a vital foundation to their undergraduate degree.



Part 1: Legal Rules and Their Sources
2. Inside a Rule of Law
3. More about Rules
4. Analyzing a Statute
5. Analyzing a Judicial Opinion
6. Reading a Case for Issues, Rules, and Determinative Facts
7. Policy and Why Courts Care About It
8. Selecting the Right Authority
9. Working with Statutes
10. Working with Cases

Part 2: The Process of Writing
11. Getting to Know Yourself as a Writer
12. Inside the Process of Writing
13. How Professional Writers Plan Their Writing

Part 3: Office Memoranda
14. Writing an Office Memorandum
15. Interviewing the Client
16. Predictive Writing in an Office Memorandum

Part 4: Organizing Analysis
17. CREAC: A Formula for Structuring Proof of a Conclusion of Law
18. Varying the Sequence and Depth of Rule Explanation and Rule Application
19. Advanced CREAC: Organizing More Than One Issue
20. Working with CREAC in First Drafts and in Later Drafts

Part 5: Working Effectively with Details
21. Writing Effective Paragraphs and Sentences
22. Effective Style: Be Clear, Vivid, and Concise
23. Citing and Quoting Authority

Part 6: Informal Analytical Writing
24. Advising and Counseling the Client
25. Client Letters
26. Electronic Communication

Part 7: The Shift to Persuasion
27. What Persuades a Court?
28. Writing a Motion Memorandum

Part 8: Telling the Client’s Story
29. The Statement of the Case in a Motion Memo or Appellate Brief
30. Developing a Persuasive Story
31. Telling the Story Persuasively

Part 9: Making the Client’s Arguments
32. The Argument in a Motion Memo or Appellate Brief
33. Point Headings and Subheadings

Part 10: Appellate Briefs and Oral Argument
34. Appellate Practice
35. Writing the Appellate Brief
36. Handling Standards of Review
37. Questions Presented
38. Making Policy Arguments
39. Oral Argument


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