If you have ever been part of a legal matter, or have taken an introductory law class, then you already know ho difficult and confusing legal English can be. Not only can it make legislative history research difficult and require you to look for free MCLEs online, but it can also make the statuatory history necessary for you to understand the status of your court case seem like a different language. Well, in some aspects, it is a different language. If you need to wade through federal statutes and regulations for any reason, here are a few facts you need to know about legal English before you go looking for free MCLEs.
Legal English is the style of language used by legal professionals and lawyers during their course of work. One of the reasons that this kind of language has stayed an important aspect of the American legal systems is due to clarity. Though a sentence written in legal English may seem like it is anything but clear, the wording used often makes loopholes in laws and verdicts more difficult. This helps the legal system more than you might think.
Legal English is typically used in mainly English speaking countries such as the U.S., the U.K., Australia, and Canada. It has been used for several centuries and gets a significant portion of its specific terminology from Latin. In fact, much of the modern legal terminology used in the United States today is derived from French and Latin. This is also one of the main reasons that it can be difficult for the lay person to understand.
In many cases, Legal English is difficult for the everyday citizen to properly decipher and understand since a lot of the root words come from French and Latin. Not only that, but the structure of the sentences, which are used to actually provide clarity, do not conform to more traditional and recognizable sentence structures.
Many individuals often resort to professional help understanding legal documents, or refer to legal dictionaries. If you are worried that you are misinterpreting a piece of legal information, then your best bet is always going to be to hire a lawyer. It is better to spend a little bit extra money for clarity than it is to spend lots as the result of an error on your part. For more information see this.