Legal Clichés that Should Be Illegal

Posted: February 28th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Plain English: Tips | Tags: , | No Comments »

Welcome to cliché week on my blog! Every profession has its own clichés. This week, we’ll review some common clichés in the legal profession and the world beyond.

Clichés are a writer’s cop-out. Using clichés suggests that you can’t find your own words. Avoid tiresome clichés and speak human instead.

Let’s start with some common legal clichés :

  • within the purview of
  • slippery slope
  • Achilles’ heel
  • Pandora’s box
  • fishing expedition
  • part and parcel
  • lion’s share
  • pulled out of whole cloth
  • can’t see the forest for the trees
  • the devil is in the details
  • all fours
  • red herring
  • fraught with peril
  • second bite at the apple
  • cut to the chase
  • it is axiomatic that
  • eminently qualified
  • incumbent upon
  • dilatory tactics
  • begs the question

… and so on ad nauseum.

Coming next: clichés from other fields, such as human resources. (Friends, we are not alone.)

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What do you think?