Characteristics of Formal Legal Language

For internationally active lawyers, communication with clients and other professionals from all cultures requires a transnational legal conscience and a cross-cultural awareness of the language. [9] [10] Whatever the form of legal drafting, legal and language skills are an essential part of higher education and vocational training. [11] c) Archaic vocabulary: Legal writing uses many ancient words and phrases that were once a common language, but exist today mainly or only in 16th century law. Some English examples are here, so far, with what and why (pronominal adverbs); said and so (as adjectives). d) Loanwords and expressions: A good number of words in the English legal term come from French and Latin. Some of the words borrowed from the French language are: estoppels, laches and voir dire. From Latin, these words came into the English language: ertiorari, habeas corpus, prima facie, among other mens rea, sub judice. In most cases, these words are not written in italics in the English script, as they are no longer considered foreign in the language. Tiersma n.p. Legal English is traditionally reserved for lawyers from English-speaking countries (especially the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Kenya and South Africa) who have common legal traditions.

Due to the spread of Legal English as the predominant language of international affairs, as well as its role as a legal language within the European Union, Legal English is now a global phenomenon. It can be unofficially called Lawspeak. [Citation needed] Modern English vocabulary refers significantly to the Germanic, French and Latin languages, the latter mainly via French. These vocabularies are preferably used in various registers, words of French origin being more formal than words of Germanic origin and words of Latin origin being more formal than those of French origin. Thus, the intensive use of French and Latin words in legal English leads to a relatively formal style. There are different types (genres) of legal writing: for example, academic legal writing as in legal journals, legal legal writing as in court decisions, or legislative legal drafting as in laws, regulations, contracts and contracts. [8] Another variant is the language used by lawyers to communicate with clients who require a more “user-friendly” written communication style than lawyers. [9] Because of this common interest between linguists and other professional associations, Crandell and Naerssen suggest that linguists and other professionals should work together to end the situation. Ezekulie reports that in 1978, Shirley Brice Heath and Charles Ferguson made an effort at the Summer Institute of the Linguistic Society of America where, both authors, introduced linguistic problems into linguistics from a variety of professional contexts (3). This particular act, which was the first of its kind, paved the way for further work in languages and professions. Thus, the study of language is designed to meet the needs of the individual for the use of language in his specific areas.

Finally, students must develop a greater respect for linguistic accuracy. Because the meaning of words is so crucial to the art of advocacy, students are expected to use words carefully and accurately. You will learn, for example, that there are legally significant differences between “Sally lives in the United States,” “Sally lives in the United States,” “Sally resides in the United States,” and “Sally is a citizen of the United States.” Even grammar and punctuation can be crucial: a person who leaves $50,000 “to each of my children who took care of me” has a different intention than a person who leaves $50,000 “to each of my children who took care of me.” The lawyer who writes the will must know how to keep this comma, or better yet, how to avoid confusion in the first place. While the legal language in the Middle Ages combined Latin, French and English to avoid ambiguities. According to Walter Probert, judicial lawyers, who are just beginning in the twentieth century, often manipulate language to make their campaign ideals more compelling. [12] Given that language is the instrument used in the drafting of these documents, it is therefore appropriate to examine the use of language in terms of its linguistic characteristics as a means by which a layman can better understand them. In legal pleadings, Anglo-Norman has developed into French law, from which many words of modern legal English originate. This includes property, estates, movable property, leases, executors and tenants. The use of French law during this period had a lasting impact on the general linguistic register of modern legal English. This use also explains some of the complex linguistic structures used in legal writing. In 1362, the Statute of Pleas was published, which stipulated that all legal proceedings must be conducted in English (but Latin).

This marked the beginning of formal legal English; French law was used in some forms until the 17th century, although French law was increasingly degenerate. The summary of the result of the results is as follows: Legal language has a particular sentence structure. The peculiarity arises from the use of sentences characterized by integrated structures, most of which are in the form of sentences and adverbs of sentences. b) Explanatory documents: These are documents that explain the law, including memos, court notices and letters from clients. They tend to be informal, but written in standard English, with little legal language, except that they use many technical terms. Legal English has particular relevance when applied to legal drafting and writing written documents, including: Second, and a little more difficult, some recognizable words take on different or new meanings when used in law. Malevolence, for example, when used in the defamation law, does not mean hatred or wickedness; it means “with a ruthless disregard for the truth.” Similarly, “consideration” in contract law has nothing to do with thoughtfulness; It means something of value given by a party to an agreement. If a party is “biased” in the law, it usually means that it has been disadvantaged in some way, not that it is sectarian. “Accessories” in property law are much more than bathroom and kitchen equipment.