Writing a legal memorandum

If witness testimony is used, the deposition or recorded statement must be referenced. To produce an accurate and well-crafted rule statement, you must have a good understanding of the existing legal authority on which your rule statement is based. You may have also grappled with a seemingly contradictory assortment of facts: Since you are not advocating for any side, you ought not color or characterize the facts as you would if you were writing a brief.

In this section, the author may give a short history of the relevant law and how it has already been applied in similar cases.

This can be done in a couple of ways. Ask the Question A legal memorandum begins with a concise statement of the question at hand. This is not to say that you should omit facts that have an emotional impact. You may want to discuss each sub-issue separately.

Hence, it was not possible for the defendant to make a valid contract by mere acceptance of a "proposition. You may choose or be asked to use footnotes or endnotes instead.

In the application section, you might draw analogies or contrasts between the cases discussed in the rule proof and your facts as a way to reach your conclusion.

At the same time, it bears emphasis that the reader for whom you prepare the memorandum may be only one of several attorneys who will consult the memo, particularly if the legal question becomes the subject of litigation. It is sometimes referred to as rule explanation.

Preparing a legal memorandum

The question should be sufficiently narrow and should be objective. In your own memo, you can recount the facts completely chronologically, you can put the most important incidents or facts first, or you can cluster the facts into discrete topics if the facts are complex and if this is the easiest way to understand them.

You may have weighed arguments against counterarguments.

How to Write a Legal Memorandum

A note on citations Your memorandum may be used to draft a letter to the client or a brief to the court, so it is extremely important to cite all of your sources and pinpoint to paragraph or page numbers as much as possible.

It is important to adopt a consistent style throughout your memorandum, rather than switching between in-text citations and footnotes. Even within the suggested format that we offer here, it is permissible and often appropriate to make choices - on how to frame the legal question, on the level of detail to include in the facts section, on the organization and scope of the legal discussion.

Reference notes linked to citations in the text normally follow, if they have not been given on individual pages of the memorandum.

However, a purchaser may not make a valid contract by mere acceptance of a "proposition. Keep in mind that the reader will be judging your credibility as a legal thinker based on among other things the congruity of your tone with the data at hand.

In Schenectady Stove Co. Remember that the ultimate goal of legal citations is to ensure your reader can easily find any of the material you reference.

Memorandum Law and Legal Definition

Or you can convey any level of confidence in between. I The first step is to state the legal issue. By announcing that "the early bird catches the savings," the ad could fairly be read to mean that the supplies were not unlimited.

Under these circumstances, the Court of Appeals held that no contract was ever made between the parties with respect to an order that defendant submitted because the plaintiff had not made an offer that was complete and definite in all material terms.

Try to approach this section using rules synthesized from the cases, rather than simply listing a series of individual cases. The ad announced that the store would open at 7 a. Then give a brief usually no more than four or five sentences long self-contained explanation of the reasons for your conclusion, applying the rule to the facts of your case.

The discussion of each issue should include an introduction, an explanation of the applicable legal rule, an application of the rule to the legal problem, and a conclusion in respect of that issue. The only general test is the inquiry whether the facts show that some performance was promised in positive terms in return for something requested.

Drafting a Law Office Memorandum

In some circumstances there may be a practical solution that enables you to avoid confronting the uncertainty in the law. IRAC need not be applied rigidly as long as all the elements are covered.Perhaps the most important skill a new lawyer needs to have a firm grasp of is writing.

Learn how to write a good legal memo here. Template included. When you are writing a legal memorandum for internal use, there is only one proper way to discuss a case.

This is the way: In Smith v. The following documents offer some suggestions for drafting a predictive legal analysis. The suggested format for a law office memorandum, structure for a working draft, a sample memorandum, and an advanced sample memorandum exemplify a conventional structure, highlighting a specific legal question and its answer, followed by a recitation.

A legal memorandum, also known as a memorandum of law, is a document that spells out the facts of a particular case, what laws apply to that case, as well as how those laws should be interpreted and/or applied to reach a decision.

An attorney prepares a memorandum of law to succinctly explain the facts and the law in. Home > Legal Writing Center > For Students > Drafting a Law Office Memorandum > Sample Memo Legal Writing Center; Social Justice Initiatives. One of the hardest parts of writing a legal memorandum is to reach a defensible conclusion when the law is uncertain generally, or as it applies to your facts.

Since the purpose of the memorandum is to answer the legal question posed, you cannot simply say that the law is unclear and leave it at that.

Download
Writing a legal memorandum
Rated 0/5 based on 43 review