I hope you've been well. Recently you wrote to us that Loman's Fashions had been sued by a shopper in Small Claims Court for a breach of contract. As you've described it, the shopper claims that she responded to an ad for a "manufacturer's closeout" of designer leather coats; the ad stated that the "early" shopper would "catch the savings. Specifically, you have asked for advice on the question whether Loman's breached a contract with the shopper under the circumstances.
They do not want to litigate, defend or even enter into transactions without obtaining a written opinion from at least one lawyer if not more. Writing these opinions represent a dialectic between two schools of thought: One, which holds that the lawyer is supposed to give his opinion, not the sources or precedents that he relies upon.
This has the advantage, according to one school of thought, of not disclosing all the cards to the client, because nine times out of ten, a client has his own favourite lawyer, who may not be particularly bright, but comes to you for an opinion because you are supposed to be an expert on the subject.
The other school of thought, to which I subscribe, is to make the opinion precise but exhaustive in its scope. Rather like saying be not eternal, since being an opinion you must end, but be infinite while you last! If the client chooses someone else and he is able to do an adequate job based on your opinion and research, he would have learned something new and the profession itself will be enriched.
Remember, a profession is only as good as its least competent member and you are judged not by the best of your kind, but the worst. More of this later, in some future installment. An opinion, as I see it, must set out the questions on which it is sought very clearly and unambiguously.
If the Querist which is what we call a person who seeks the opinion is himself confused, his questions will be equally mindless. It is your duty as a lawyer to unravel his tangled skein of thought, identify the issues that are material and on which the relief he wants depends, and then frame them as questions.
Of course, these must resemble the original questions, because otherwise the Querist will feel that you have not answered him, however stupid his questions might have been. This narration must not employ any fact that has not been supplied rather like the facts in a moot but it certainly ought to include any presumption or natural inference you have made from the facts, for the purpose of the opinion.
You must of course, state that this is your presumption or inference.
After the facts are over, you may begin your analysis, on which the opinion depends. An easy way of analysing is to first set out the law and the provisions of the law or laws that are applicable. Then you go on to summarize the binding precedents judgments of the Supreme Court and the High Court of the State exercising jurisdiction over the subject matter with full citations.
If your choice of extracts is precise enough, your ultimate opinion will appear from the extracts of the judgments that you have quoted. In the analysis you may also point out the conditions which have to exist for the answer to the queries to be positive or negative which will advise the client as to what steps he ought to have taken so that he can correct himself in the future in similar matters.
Then indicate in brief that according to the law applicable to the facts, where the Querist actually stands.
Numbering the paragraphs help, because in your opinion or as part of the analysis you may have to refer to what has been written before and by referring to the paragraph-number you obviate the need of repeating the whole thing.
Now you are ready to answer the Queries, that is, the opinion proper, as it is called. Where that is impossible, keep your answers as short as possible. An example may help. Remember to use the usual disclaimers, that the opinion is based on the law as it stands on the date when you are signing it, and is based on the facts and documents that were supplied to you by the Querist.
It helps if you list the documents supplied and also that which you have consulted. Remember to add that it is according to the best of your ability. If you are practising as an advocate on record, this will go a long way in saving you from being found guilty of professional misconduct and also negligent in any proceeding before the Bar Council or for damages for malpractice, in case your opinion was wrong.
Interning at his chambers is an experience of a life time. People who learn drafting and oratory skills from him swear by the excellent teacher he is. He talks about movies and literature as authoritatively as he talks on law and wrote on such diverse subjects for the Economic Times in Home > Legal Writing Center > For Drafting a Client Letter.
Suwyn, Siska & King Attorneys at Law Main Street Flushing, New York your ad had not included language to that effect. 2 You have asked for this law firm's opinion whether this shopper could succeed on her breach of contract claim. Aug 23, · Oftentimes a Justice who is not in agreement with the majority will write a dissenting opinion or case analysis.
Sometimes a Justice who is in agreement with the majority will write his or her own case analysis. If there is a dissenting or concurring 91%(). Perhaps the most important skill a new lawyer needs to have a firm grasp of is writing.
Learn how to write a good legal memo here. Template included. This is where you take a stand and state your opinion in two or three sentences. There will be time to address all aspects of the issues in the main portion of the memo.
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Letter to Attorney Terlaje-Requesting Legal. Write under following heads: Facts: Governing provisions of Law. Previous case laws relevant to the query. Analysis of the facts in relation to the Legal provisions and case laws.
Jul 02, · How to Write a Legal Memo Five Parts: Organizing the Facts Researching the Law Assembling the Argument Drafting the Memo Polishing the Memo Community Q&A A legal memorandum is a document written by a lawyer for the benefit of a client%(22).