The 2009 Philippine Blog Awards

Thursday, May 27, 2010

PERSONAL PICK: Expunge the Legalese in Me...


I am currently attending a Mandatory Continuing Legal Education (MCLE)classes to complete my Compliance 3 which ended last April 14, 2010. Yea, I am late and cramming! But after this Series 49 (a full package of 36 units with Legal Advantage plus 4 units on Legal Ethics with Chan Robles Lawnet, MCLE providers), I will have 23 units credited for MCLE 4 and only need 13 units until April 14, 2013.

MCLE is a continuing legal education required of members of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) to complete at least thirty-six (36) hours of legal education activities every three (3) years.

The first session of Legal Advantage Series 49 is on Legal Writing and Oral Advocacy which is a part of my lacking units for MCLE 3. Atty. Rose Marie King - Dominguez, a partner of SyCip Salazar Hernandez & Gatmaitan is the lecturer. She said that effective legal writing must be clear and useful which means discarding the "legalese".

Legalese is a law jargon, a language that is typically used in legal documents and is generally considered by lay people to be difficult to understand. Looking at the blog "Party of the First Part", I guess I am guilty as charged! In contracts I still use some legalese like:

ab initio - use "from the beginning"
Null and void - use "ineffective, cancelled"
Know All Men By These Presents - remove it. it simply means "look out here comes a legal document".
Witnesseth - remove it.

For a complete list of legalese,checkout the blog "Party of the First Part" which in itsef is a legalese.