AAU Academy Executive Course

Legalese

Legal English and language strategies for lawyers and professionals in the legal field.  

30 Years of Education
Track Executive
Instructor Carollann Braum
Date February 5 - 6, 2021
Format Two-day workshop
Delivery On Campus
Price 13,490 CZK
Language English
CPD Hours 12
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Course Description

Intensive workshop designed for legal professionals and managers who want to improve their legal vocabulary, learn the correct phraseology, and communicate with their international clients smoothly and efficiently.   

Legal English (or Legalese) isn’t only for courtroom settings or contract drafting. Legal and business professionals will encounter legalese in many contexts, ranging from news stories to contracts to negotiations to emails with clients and small talk with colleagues.  Every morning will begin with a warming-up discussion of “law in the news” and how to read and discuss the nuances of legal language in the news. 

As communication becomes more casual and the world moves toward more informal interactions, the concept of legalese gains more attention and many professionals question whether the more formal legal language still has a place in the world or whether plain language should become more common. We’ll discuss the positives and negatives of formal and informal language in different contexts, so that participants can be aware of the differences and consequences of each, but most importantly teach participants to recognize and effectively use both legalese styles. 

A class that shouldn’t be missed for global-minded legal professionals! 

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand the basic differences between general English and legal terms
  • Recognize the evolving approach to formal legal English vs plain-language legal English, which is increasingly used in both law firms and businesses
  • Identify the importance of punctuation and grammar, including the real legal consequences that mistakes can have
  • Understand how to interpret contract provisions, including what to look out for and how broadly or narrowly the legal language used might be interpreted
  • Gain confidence in using Legal English with clients, colleagues, and other professionals

Methodology

Participants will be encouraged and have the opportunity to put their legalese and the skills they are learning in this course into action in every session with negotiations, staged interactions, contract drafting, mediations, and more through interesting real-world cases and scenarios:

  • The Million Dollar Comma Case – how a missing comma in legislation cost businesses millions of dollars
  • Tip of the Iceberg Contract Provisions – how innocent-looking contract provisions that could be read much more expansively than anyone likely intended and unintentionally trap a client into far more than you expect
  • The Greatest Negotiation in Hollywood History – how staying true to your clients’ goals and being intentional and strategic with contract language can seriously pay off

Schedule and Course Content

For a detailed course schedule and content, please download the Course Outline.

Default course delivery is on campus. If on campus courses are not feasible due to government restrictions, this course will be delivered online. For all courses that take place on a Friday and Saturday, online modes will take place the following week on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. One-day courses that take place on a Friday will be delivered online the following Monday and Tuesday.

Day 1 Outline

Morning Session (3 hours)

  • Introduction to Legalese
  • Interpreting law in the news to warm up
  • Main Topic: Effective Communication
  • Different types of effective communication with clients, colleagues, and professional counterparts
  • Emails, meetings, negotiations, and small talkActivity: Small mock negotiations and interactions

Afternoon Session (3 hours)

  • Main Topic: Punctuation and Grammar, Interpreting Legislation and Regulations 
  • Million Dollar Comma Case and the importance of punctuation in Legal Writing
  • Reading and Reviewing Legislation and Regulations, through applications to real life scenarios
  • Activity: Practice regulation drafting and application

Day 2 Outline

Morning Session (3 hours)

  • Interpreting law in the news to warm up
  • Main Topic: Legal Language in Contracts
  • Contract Language in Real Contracts
  • Plain English or Legalese?
  • Discussion on Formal vs Informal Phrasing
  • Activity: Contract Terms Negotiation and Drafting

Afternoon Session (3 hours)

  • Main Topic: Resolving Conflict
  • Activity: Mediation for Contract Breaches – based on Contract Drafts
  • Review and discussion of the Mediation and the Greatest Negotiation in Hollywood History
  • Concluding conversation about the real-world impact of Legalese

Materials & Lunch Break

Handouts will be provided at the start of class. Lunch will be provided for all participants at Café des Taxis.

Your Instructor

Carollann Braum, LL.M., J.D.
AAU Academy Instructor, Executive Courses
Program Chair, Mediator and Restorative Justice Facilitator

Braum is a lawyer who was admitted to the bars in Colorado and Oklahoma in the United States (currently not active). She is currently researching the use of truth and reconciliation commissions and trials for past human rights violations committed during decolonization as part of her Ph.D. research with the University of London. She earned an LLM in International Human Rights Law from the University of Notre Dame Law School, as well as a Juris Doctor from Oklahoma City University School of Law. Before moving to Prague, Ms. Braum ran an immigration and human rights solo law practice in Colorado and has trial experience in federal civil rights law. Prior to that, she engaged in research regarding human trafficking and organized crime prosecutions in Chicago and Denver and helped draft legislation aimed at combating human trafficking and organized crime in Oklahoma. 

See what our students have to say

We do almost all of our projects in small international teams, and we work together like we would in a business company and synergize our different ideas. There's flexibilities to meet with teachers outside of class, and ask them questions, not just specifically things we learn in the class.

Ann Connolly
Business Administration, United States of America

AAU makes networking incredibly easy to do. I was able to participate in various events that don't necessarily connect to my coursework like conferences, literature festivals, debates, lectures, etc. When I was President of the Diplomatic Club, AAU helped me get in touch with event-organizers, which, for example, allowed us to host an event during the Festival of Democracy organized by the famous Forum 2000 conference.

Anastasia Mezenina
Business Administration, Russian Federation

Meet the people

Dana Aleksic

External Outreach Manager dana.aleksic@aauni.edu

Eva Rivera, Ph.D.

Vice-President for Institutional Advancement eva.rivera@aauni.edu
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Do you have questions?

We are happy to help!

Rebecca Newhouse Admissions Counselor rebecca.newhouse@aauni.edu
Clea Boban Admissions Counselor clea.boban@aauni.edu