Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The Good, the Bad, and the Wordy, Part I

The venerable legislative drafting manual is the law writer's guide. The drafting manual helps one to stay on target and to resist being corralled onto poor word choices. Though the particulars of these manuals may vary, one common feature is a list of words and phrases to use, and words and phrases to avoid using, in the drafting of bills. Here are some of my personal favorites.

Good                                                       Bad

a, an                                                       any, every

a, an, the                                                such, said

comply                                                   in compliance with

if                                                             provided that

to                                                            in order to, for the purpose of

with                                                        in conjunction with

without                                                   in the absence of

about, for, over                                    with respect to

apply                                                   submit or make an application for

assess                                                 perform an assessment of

later                                                      at a later date

notify                                                    send notification of

survey                                                 conduct a survey of

investigate                                          conduct an investigation of

 select                                                  make a selection

review                                                 conduct a review of

except                                                 with the exception of

explain                                                provide an explanation of

exceeding                                          in excess of

inspect                                               perform an investigation of

Common "circumlocutions" comprise a special subset of bad words. Special because lawyers seem to love them the most.


bind and obligate
by and between
by and with
cease and desist
covenant and agree
due and owing
relieve and discharge
each and every
for and during
full and complete
furnish and supply
kind and nature
over and above
power and authority
suffer or permit


shall and will
sole and exclusive
true and correct
then and in any event
unless and until
type and kind
supercede and displace
adopt, promulgate, and enforce

1 comment:

  1. 幽默並不是諷刺,它或許帶有溫和的嘲諷,卻不傷人,它可能是以別人,也可以用自己為對象。..................................................