There is a wealth of great material on the internet about the craft of transactional lawyering and the skills that young lawyers need. One service that the Walters Way can provide is to help you distinguish the good from the not so good from the “do-not-touch-with-a-barge-pole” (or “do-not-touch-with-a-ten-foot-pole” as I believe you say here in the United States…). So from time to time I will post about other blogs and resources that have particularly caught my eye.
To get us started, I warmly recommend these three blogs:
- theContractsGuy, a blog by Brian Rogers, a business attorney here in the MidWest. Brian’s stuff is terrific because he combines posts about developments in the substantive law (with a particular focus on Illinois and Missouri) with insights into business law practice and real life drafting of contracts. For a taster, take a look at Brian’s recent post, “Contracts Quiz: Is This Email Settlement Binding?” and the comments that it generated. I hope that my 1Ls will immediately recognize that the hypo Brian discusses (derived from a real case in Missouri) raises very similar issues to those that can arise in the context of letters of intent.
- Ken Adams’s the Koncise Drafter. Ken is a renowned authority on the drafting of contracts with a strong commitment to the use of clear, comprehensible and concise language. He has set up a business, Koncision, which generates automated contract templates for law firms and other organizations. Aside from Ken’s blog, his book, A Manual of Style for Contract Drafting (ABA 2d ed., 2008) is a “must read” for would be transactional lawyers. Ken also posted recently about an exchange he had with a young lawyer working in-house. This really resonated with me as I remember feeling just like that young lawyer when I first started out all those years ago! theContractsGuy also posted a great follow up to Ken’s post sharing his tips for young lawyers.
- Michelle Hynes’s Leagleeaglemhm Blawg. Michelle has a different focus from Brian and Ken. She’s a Scot, based in Glasgow, who recently switched to a law career having worked for several years in marketing and running her own small businesses. She has a particular interest in law, business and technology – an interest that I know a number of my students share. As she has just started her job as a practicing attorney (what we Brits call a “trainee solicitor”) she is well placed to provide insights into legal practice from the perspective of a new lawyer!