Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Lessons in Legalese or How to Expand the Pagecount of Existing Documentation while Lacking Additional Material Terms Based upon the Mutual Intentions

I’m in the midst of hacking my way through a settlement agreement making vital changes that no one will ever agree to without putting a gun to their head. That’s why I want to offer you tips on how to really overwrite and complicate the simplest of documents:

1. Do not say anything in five words when you can say it eighteen paragraphs with multiple subsections.

2. Repeat and re-allege is lawyer-speak for copy and paste.

3. If you cannot think of the word you want to use, just make one up. (Just add an ‘able’ or a ‘tion’ to the end of a pre-existing word if you are in a pinch)

4. Always include an attorneys fees provision. (Even if it’s a love letter)
I really hate writing in legalese and even more people can’t stand reading this tripe. That’s why you can be sneaky and screw your opponent a zealous representative of your client and slip in the odd term that really benefits your client. Or yourself.