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Modern Legal Drafting – dare the Translator tread on the Drafter’s toes?




In Modern Legal Drafting, a book whose title leaves no doubt as to its content, Peter Butt, Emeritus Professor of Law at Sydney University, risks incurring the wrath of the world’s law community by inviting modern legal drafters to “cut the crap”, avoid using a plethora of antiquated, obsolete and meaningless words and expressions intelligible only to a rapidly diminishing circle of brandy-swigging, pipe-smoking, wig-bearing old fogies and write something that is clear, unambiguous and makes sense to an average lay reader. His recommendations, if ever they prevail, could sound the death knell for the largely discredited (in his view) practice of payment by length or time, a death long ago portended by an enlightened court ruling of 1596. (Paul Kempson)

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