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The English used in legal contexts has special characteristics that may

difer from the English used in other felds. Some of the features of
legal English are the use of:
1. Formal, archaic and loan words: words that are highly formal and sometimes
described as Shakespearean English, together with Italian and French words and
I ,hereby, give unto my son
Prima facie evidence
Res judicata
2. Technical terminology: legal terms are very common in any legal text.
"This Code applies with respect to proceedings in view of imposing a
penal sanction for an ofence under any ct, e!cept proceedings
brought before a disciplinary body." "uebec #ode of Penal Procedures
3. Legal maxims: broad statements of established principles (usually stated in
xed !atin forms".
The burden of proof lies with the one who ma$es the charge %#ctori
incumbit onus probandi&
The contract ma$es the law of the parties %$acta sunt servanda&
'o crime without provision %%ullum crime lege&
4. Fixed expressions: expressions that are commonly used in certain xed forms.
Part and parcel of
s may be necessary
(nder condition of inspection
)y way of e!ception from the above
5. Legal homonyms: legal vocabulary that looks like ordinary language, but has
&uite a distinct meaning.
ction: not a physical movement, but a lawsuit*
)rief: a noun referring to a type of legal document, not an adjective, and
despite the name, virtually never brief*
+otion: a re,uest that a court issue an order or engage in some other act:
the only thing that moves is the lawyer-s lips
6. Special graphetic and graphological features: writing words in a signicant
way, such as using #apital, )./#0, old or italic letters a1ecting the meaning.
The 2eller (the seller named and dened in the contract as one of the
parties and not 'ust any seller" agrees to sell and the Purchaser (the
purchaser named and dened in the contract as one of the parties and
not 'ust any purchaser" agrees to buy
7. !Shall" # !$ay": Shall is used in legal writing to express a certain ()!I*#+I(%
and ,ay is used to express $E-,ISSI(%.
In consideration of the .322/R granting lease to the .32233, the .32233
shall pay the .322/R a monthly rent of 444444444 %the sum in words& payable
in advance by 44444 day of respective month of the 3nglish #alendar*
The .322/R may at his sole discretion e!tend the period of lease
agreement for another si! months with no increase in rent after
8. Special anaphoric de%ices &same ' such ' said 'as ' preposition(li)e
words*: these words are used to avoid needless repetition of words without
a.ecting the meaning.
)oth Parties hereby (by this contract" agree as follows:
Hereinafter (afterwards in this contract" referred to as
Reclamation of barren land and cultivation thereof (of that barren land"
If the #ontractor incurs any further costs , then the 3mployer shall ta$e
such costs (the costs incurred by the /ontractor" into consideration*
Tenderer may attend when tenders are being opened to hear the prices of
tenders while reading out the same (those prices".
. +ouplets, triplets and strings of synonyms: using two or more synonyms
for only one meaning.
ny and all
3ach and every
9inal and conclusive