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Ever Hear of a Well-Claused Brief?

C. Edward Good

©2017. Published in Landslide, Vol. 9, No. 4, March/April 2017, by the American Bar Association. Reproduced with permission. All rights reserved. This information or any portion thereof may not be copied or disseminated in any form or by any means or stored in an electronic database or retrieval system without the express written consent of the American Bar Association or the copyright holder.

No, but you have heard of a well-phrased brief.

Many legal writers use way too many clauses and, for some reason, eschew phrases. In this article, we’ll look at the art of clause-cutting. Writers who learn the trick will improve their writing style as they seek to achieve the Strunk and White goals of “omit[ting] needless words” and making “every word tell.”1

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