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Rupert Haigh, Legal English (2012)


Rupert Haigh, Legal English (2012)


Rupert Haigh holds a MA in English from Cambridge University and an LLM from Helsinki. He worked as a Solicitor in England after completing his legal studies and now actively pursues training young legal professionals. Written primarily for the legal or business professional, Legal English provides a comprehensive, practical self-help guide to the use of legal terminology. A particular emphasis is placed on the use of the English language in highly digitized and global legal and business worlds. Both students new to legal terminology and practitioners looking for a refresher course will find this third edition useful since it combines step-by-step explanations of written and oral communications within the legal practice and provides in-text as well as online exercises for practice. It is divided into twenty-two chapters, covering an array of topics from the usage of legal terminology to legal and contract-drafting guidance. It also features an expansive legal glossary and troubleshooting tips for legal writing. The adjoining website provides contextual exercises for each topic covered in the book. It can be accessed through


Rupert Haigh


Rupert Haigh, Legal English, 3rd ed. (New York: Routledge, 2012).





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When using English for legal purposes we are likely to need to draw on an established pool of terminology derived from Latin and French. In fact, we cannot get by without Latin and French-derived words. Some of these words are relatively commonplace (e.g. cause, circumstance, control ) and can be used in a wide variety of contexts, while others (e.g. liable, party, obligation ) have more specific legal meanings. In all cases, the underlying grammatical construction of the sentences is largely based on Old English, while the Latinand French-derived words largely define the terminology used. Thus, Latin-based terminology is essential to legal English. To use a computing analogy, we might say that where legal English is concerned, English is the ‘hardware’ which determines the grammatical construction of the sentences, but the Latin-based terminology is the ‘software’ which provides the legal meaning.


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Rupert Haigh, Rupert Haigh, Legal English (2012), Civil War Era NC, accessed May 26, 2024,