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Legal Writing

This guide assists first-year law students with the CREAC format used in legal writing.

Analogical Reasoning

THIS ANALYSIS NEEDS AN EDIT:

Next, Mrs. Sweeney consulted with an attorney about pursuing the steps to adopt. This demonstrates intent to adopt similar to the one in Rivolo where the decedent took the respondent to the court house multiple times to adopt her. After talking to the attorney, Mrs. Sweeney believed that by law she was unable to adopt without the consent of her husband, but she tried to “wear him down” about consenting to the adoption up until the time that he died. This case is similar to Rivolo because in both cases the custodial parents took formal steps to begin the adoption process and or initiated the adoption proceedings. Rebecca discussed her desire to adopt Alan with her friend, Susan Phinney six months before she died. Finally, Rebecca told Alan that she wanted to adopt him on numerous occasions and assured Alan that she could convince her husband to agree to adopt him. Thus, a court will likely find evidence of intent to adopt because Mrs. Sweeney took formal steps to begin the adoption process by consulting with an attorney.

 

THE EDIT WILL CORRECT THE FOLLOWING:

  1. Conclusion sentence: the legal writer does not precisely state the point of the analysis as it relates to the relevant part of the rule.
  2. Fact-to-Fact Comparison #1: the legal writer explains how the determinative facts from the instant case and precedent case are the same as to the intent element, but muddies the explanation because it is out-of-order, includes irrelevant facts, overlooks relevant parties, and fails to acknowledge the holding of the precedent case.
  3. Fact-to-Fact Comparison #2: the legal writer states the facts of the instant case without doing the hard work of showing how they are analogous to the facts of the precedent case--this is fact stacking, not analysis.
  4. Citations: the legal writer forgets to cite to the precedent case, and needs to acknowledge the procedural phrase in the case name of the precedent case when referring to it in the main text (Bluebook Rule 10.9).
  5. Parties' Names: the legal writer uses inconsistent language to refer to the parties.
  6. Thus/Therefore statement: the legal writer does not acknowledge the holding of the precedent case, from which the analogous facts stem, and does not include all the analogous facts.

 

AFTER THE EDIT, THE ANALYSIS IS NOW ACCOMPLISHED:

Here, Alan will probably be able to prove Rebecca intended to adopt him because she continuously expressed this desire to him and others on numerous occasions. Rebecca’s expression of her desire to adopt Alan parallels that of the decedent in Rivolo's Estate.  In both cases, the decedents indicated their intent to adopt by express oral agreements. Rivolo's Estate, 15 Cal. Rptr. at 269. The decedent in Rivolo's Estate verbally expressed his desire to adopt the claimant several times. Id. Further, the decedent told the claimant, in front of a witness, that she was legally adopted and would be his sole heir, which the court reasoned established intent to find for the claimant's equitable adoption. Id. Similarly, Rebecca told Alan that she wanted to adopt him on numerous occasions and assured Alan that she could convince her husband to agree to adopt him.  Moreover, Rebecca discussed her desire to adopt Alan with her sister, Susan Phinney, just six months before dying. In addition to verbally communicating her desire to adopt Alan, Rebecca also took formal steps to adopt him. Much like the decedent in Rivolo's Estate, who petitioned the court to adopt the claimant, Rebecca sought an attorney's counsel about adopting Alan. Id. at 270. Accordingly, since the Rivolo's Estate court determined the custodial parent intended to adopt the foster child, here a court will likely find that Rebecca intended to adopt Alan because she continually expressed a desire to adopt him throughout her life and acted on that desire by consulting an attorney.

 

THE ANALYSIS IS ACCOMPLISHED FOR THESE REASONS:

  1. The Conclusion sentence(s) effectively set up the point of the analysis and conclude as to how the instant case and precedent case are the same as to the intent element (red sentences)
  2. Explanatory sentence effectively explains how the instant case and precedent are the same, weaving together the relevant language from the rule and the determinative facts from the case, and in doing so, sets up the forthcoming fact-to-fact comparisons (blue sentence)
  3. Fact-to-fact comparison #1 (across a few sentences) explains how the determinative facts from the instant case and precedent case are the same as to the intent element and acknowledges the holding of the precedent case (green sentences)
  4. Fact-to-fact comparison #2 (across a single sentence) effectively weaves together the relevant language from the rule and the determinative facts from the cases to show how the instant case and precedent are the same as to the intent element (purple sentence)
  5. Thus/therefore statement acknowledges the precedent case and explains the predictive holding (in a because statement) by reiterating the analogous facts (orange sentence)