From the Editor: This is a guest post from a member of the MerusCase family specializing in Personal Injury cases out of Tampa, FL. While we obviously agree wholeheartedly with at least one of his choices (thanks for the nod, Scott), some specifics will vary from firm to firm. Enjoy!Read More
Happy Friday everyone 🎉! If you're like me, you absolutely love data visualization. So to celebrate the end of the week I give you... the MerusCase word cloud ☁️.
|Well obviously you're going to have to click and find out.|
From May 15, 2018 to May 27, 2018, these are the most popular words that led to MerusCase.com showing up on people's Google search results pages.Read More
|Legalese is even older than this.|
"When you wish to instruct, be brief; that men’s minds take in quickly what you say, learn its lesson, and retain it faithfully. Every word that is unnecessary only pours over the side of a brimming mind." -Cicero, Roman politician and lawyer. A major influence on the Latin language.
"By 2100, about half the world’s languages will be lost, say linguists; one dies every 14 days. Don’t bet legalese will be among them." Why is this the case?
Today we're going to take a close look at Legal English, sometimes referred to pejoratively as "legalese". We're going to take a look at what legalese is, the history of it, and why the legal tech industry is working hard to disrupt it.
Legal English is a more formal version of the English language, with different logic and grammar rules from Standard English. Certain words have different meaning in a Legal English context. For example, in Legal English "consideration" refers to something of value that is exchanged between two parties.
|It never hurts to keep it real.|
There are many reasons why lawyers use legalese, among them:
- It conveys the formalness of a situation. There is power in formality.
- The practice of law is rich in tradition. This is is the way things have always done.
- It creates a legal culture, one that separates lawyers from everyone else. How else are lawyers going to identify each other? See also: Shibboleth.
- If people don't know what they're paying for, they're inclined to pay more for it.
- A false sense of security. If you put more words on a document, it means you have all your bases covered right?
Ever since the 70s there has been a movement to abolish legalese from the English language, especially in government agencies and contracts.