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Submission Contribution Guidelines

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The Business Lawyer

The Business Lawyer circulates to approximately 30,000 readers and is among the most cited law journals in the nation. Our aim is to provide members of the legal profession and the public generally with practical articles by individual authors and reports and surveys by various committees of the ABA Business Law Section in the fields of law within the general purview of the Section.

The Editor-in-Chief and the Editorial Board encourage the submission of finished manuscripts on legal topics within any area of business law.

The Business Lawyer is published quarterly in Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall.

Articles submitted for possible publication in The Business Lawyer are carefully reviewed by the Editor-in-Chief and/or various members of the Editorial Board or other peers specializing in the area or topic on which the article is based. The Editor-in-Chief and Editorial Board members are volunteers with full-time legal practices. This may result in a comparatively lengthier review process than other law journals. Accordingly, we generally will not honor requests for expedited review absent special circumstances. See the Peer Review Guidelines.

If your article is rejected, you will receive notice of such in writing from the Editor-in- Chief. If your article is accepted, you will receive notice of such in writing from the Editor-in-Chief along with the ABA's standard Publication Agreement for your signature. The Publication Agreement must be signed before we may publish your article.

Please contact the Production Manager for a status update of your article. However, please allow at least six weeks from your submission date before you inquire.

Once an article is accepted for publication in The Business Lawyer, it is coded in Word, edited and cite checked. Upon the author's approval of this draft, the author will receive a second version of his or her article reflecting these changes in typeset format. This is the author's final review before the issue is printed. It is expected that authors will meet all deadlines in order to ensure timely production. Authors should contact the Production Manager with questions or concerns regarding any changes made to his or her article or with problems meeting deadlines.

Offprints are copies of each author's article printed on the same paper stock as The Business Lawyer and bound by the cover of the issue in which the article is printed. Fifty complimentary offprints of each article are printed for distribution among the authors of each article. Thus, a single author of a particular article appearing in The Business Lawyer will receive all 50 copies. Articles co-authored by two or more individuals must designate a "contact author" who will receive the 50 copies for distribution among his or her co-authors. In addition to the 50 complimentary copies, all authors are provided an opportunity to purchase, through the Production Manager, additional copies at the time the issue is printed.

Business Law Today

Business Law Today is seeking your ideas for high-quality, original content that contributes value to business lawyers. We accept contributions ranging from a few sentences to several thousand words across ten legal practice areas:

  • Bankruptcy and Finance
  • Business Litigation and Dispute Resolution
  • Business of Law
  • Business Regulation and Regulated Industries
  • Corporations, LLCs and Partnerships
  • International Business Law
  • Internet Law and Cybersecurity
  • Legal Opinions and Ethics
  • Mergers and Acquisitions
  • Securities Law

Please note that all ideas, submissions, and content will be reviewed by the Editorial Board. The Board is made up of practicing attorneys, judges, and academics. Submissions are reviewed based on relevance, originality, timeliness, and value-add, including accuracy of law, quality of insight, and consistency with Business Law Today guidelines and tone. We do not accept submissions created using generative AI at any stage (aside from basic tools for checking grammar, etc.). We do not accept opinion pieces or book reviews, which are outside of the publication’s scope, but we will consider articles based on or excerpted from books. Writing by student authors will only be considered for month-in-briefs (see below), papers that place in the Business Law Section’s Mendes Hershman Student Writing Contest, or articles co-authored with an attorney.

Content Categories

Business Law Today publishes in several formats. When submitting a pitch, please identify the intended content category of your work.

Month-in-Brief

The month’s most important and timely headlines. These are scannable, curated briefings, with each short entry 150–450 words. They might summarize a recent Supreme Court ruling, point to an interesting development in the field, or introduce a new lawsuit with broader implications for practitioners. Month-in-briefs should link to primary sources and should not include footnotes. Examples include “California Approves Commercial Financing Disclosures Regulations,” “SEC and CTFC Propose Amendments to Required Reporting by Private Funds,” and “Delaware Chancery Court Finds Tesla’s Purchase of SolarCity to Be Fair Despite Flawed Sale Process.”

Articles

Quick insights on timely issues relevant to practitioners. Articles offer a new or unique angle, analysis, or advice in around 750–1,800 words. Many of our articles work best with a hook—a concrete development (often a recent case or news item) that frames the piece. Examples of articles include “Diligencing AI-Enabled M&A Targets: Seven Things to Understand,” “Amgen, Black Knight, and Assa Abloy: Are Merger Settlements Making a Comeback?,” and “Delaware Court of Chancery Calls into Question Equitable Jurisdiction over Certain Claims for Release of Escrowed Funds.”

In-Depth

Longer-form content that offers deep analysis of a topic. These pieces often incorporate footnotes and analyze a number of cases as they track the development of a concept, or they might dive deep into a particular case, pulling in precedent and other impactful context to explicate its significance. In-depth articles are often behind a paywall, accessible to members of the American Bar Association’s Business Law Section. Examples of in-depth articles include “The Corporate Transparency Act Will Change the Way You Practice,” “The Fee Hike Dilemma: The U.S. Supreme Court Resolves Fee Dispute and Holds Fee Hike Unconstitutional,” and “The Nature of Fiduciary Duties Owed to Limited-Life Corporations.”

Tools

Practical resources such as checklists, model forms, and worksheets. Tools can be picked up easily to assist in practitioners’ work, whether they provide a quick guide to a topic or can be incorporated directly into a workflow. They consist of both the tool document itself—supported formats include PDFs, text documents, spreadsheets, and slideshows—and at least 200 words of introductory narrative describing in what circumstances the tool is useful and contextualizing the information it contains. Tools are published behind a paywall, accessible to members of the American Bar Association’s Business Law Section. Examples of tools include “The Art of Case Management: A Former Judge’s Tool for Mastering Deadlines,” “Model Standstill/Tolling Agreement,” and “Data License Checklist.”

Publication Guidelines

Business Law Today publishes articles and tools consistently as they are ready to go, while month-in-briefs are published monthly. Publicity emails go out at the start of the month and at mid-month. A submitted article can take from a few days to a few months to move from submission to publication, depending on the nearest publication date, available peer reviewers, length of piece, and editorial calendar; it’s best to plan for about two weeks as turn-around time.

The tone of the site tends toward journalistic and casual, less formal than much of legal and academic writing. Authors are not paid and maintain full publication rights following their appearance on the site. Business Law Today does not reprint previously published articles. We are, however, able to work with repurposed client alerts.

Submission Process

We accept both pitches and completed pieces. Submit to either the site editor or a practice area editor, listed below. Once an article is received, it will first go out for peer review and then be returned to the author as needed. Once the author has had the chance to address peer reviewer comments and revise the piece, the article will be returned to staff for copyediting in accordance with house style. The author will have a final chance to revise before publication. The author will also be responsible for drafting a brief summary for use in online publishing, signing a publication agreement, and submitting a biography and photo (1000x1000 or larger and 72 dpi).

Pitch an Editor

or contact an editor of the practice area you want to write in:

Non-CLE Webinars

Breaking development in your area of expertise? Have a niche topic for a subcommittee presentation? Non-CLE webinars are a perfect way to cover material that otherwise doesn't fit as a traditional CLE program or webinar.

Production Details:

  • 3-week lead-time
  • No presentation length or material requirements
  • Free for Section members, registration required

CLE Webinars

Business Law Basics

Business Law Basics features monthly programs focused on the fundamentals of key practice areas.

Production Details:

6-week production timeline

  • Original materials (PowerPoint slides, etc.) submitted 2 days before presentation
  • 60 min or 90 min presentation length
  • Free for Section members, registration required
  • Available afterwards as free on-demand CLE

 Questions or want to get started?

Contact [email protected]

In The Know

In The Know features hot-topic webinars developed by practice-area experts.

Production Details:

  • 6-week production timeline
  • Original materials (PowerPoint slides, etc.) submitted 2 days before presentation
  • 90 min presentation length, 75 min of presentation followed by 15 min Q&A
  • Free for Section members, registration required
  • Available afterwards as free on-demand CLE

Questions or want to get started?

Contact [email protected]

Podcasts

The Business Law Section’s podcast series, “To the Extent That. . . ,” offers possibilities to create business law-related podcast series on a variety of business law practice areas. Email Rick Paszkiet, BLS Content Manager, at [email protected] for the Business Law Section Podcast Proposal Form to submit your series idea for consideration.