Writing Tips

Legal Writing

Our best writing tip? Edit for clarity and brevity with WordRake. It’s an automated in-line editor that checks for needless words, cumbersome phrases, clichés, and more.

Download a 7-Day Free Trial

The Best Way to Open a Client Letter (Part 3 of 3)

The Third Sentence – Your Recommendation

After you have opened with a proper Sentence of Reference (Part 1) and followed with your Conclusion (Part 2), now recommend to your client how to proceed. Using bullets or numbers, list each recommendation on the first page, where the client can “see” everything. No matter how long the memorandum, or how little time the client has to read it, everything the client needs resides in that three-sentence opening followed by a “to do” list. Incorporating the examples from Part 1 and Part 2 for the final look:

As you requested in my office last Wednesday, I have analyzed Uzumi’s claims for breach of the overtime provisions in the Illinois Labor Code. I have concluded that your Illinois part-time supervisors are not exempt, because they do not satisfy the “duties” tests that apply prior to January 1, 2013.
Because of my findings, I recommend you immediately:

1. re-draft all recruiting, offer, and orientation documents to include clear language that part-time supervisors receive fixed salaries for varying amounts of non-overtime work;

2. ensure that salaries to part-time supervisors fairly compensate them for the anticipated average weekly hours of work on their shifts; and

3. devise a strategy to communicate these changes to current part-time supervisors and their managers.

The Fourth Sentence? “Let me explain.” Or, “Here is my reasoning." Because you have framed the letter properly, the client now can decide whether to read the detail. He doesn’t have to; he already knows what to do. But if he wants to spend the weekend reading your 23-page tome, that’s his business.

Writing Tips in Your Inbox

About Gary Kinder

Gary Kinder

WordRake founder Gary Kinder has taught over 1,000 writing programs for AMLAW 100 firms, Fortune 500 companies, and government agencies. He’s also a New York Times bestselling author. As a writing expert and coach, Gary was inspired to create WordRake when he noticed a pattern in writing errors that he thought he could address with technology.

In 2012, Gary and his team of engineers created WordRake editing software to help writers produce clear, concise, and effective prose. It saves time and gives confidence. Writing and editing has never been easier.

WordRake takes you beyond the merely grammatical to the truly great—the quality editor you’ve always wanted. See for yourself.

Download a 7-Day Free Trial

How Does it Work?

WordRake is editing software designed by writing expert and New York Times bestselling author Gary Kinder. Like an editor or helpful colleague, WordRake ripples through your document checking for needless words and cumbersome phrases. Its complex algorithms find and improve weak lead-ins, confusing language, and high-level grammar and usage slips.

WordRake runs in Microsoft Word and Outlook, and its suggestions appear in the familiar track-changes style. If you’ve used track changes, you already know how to use WordRake. There’s nothing to learn and nothing to interpret. Editing for clarity and brevity has never been easier.