Moot Court Competitions are an inherent part of law school life. One of the important parts of this competition is drafting a Moot Court Memorial. A lot of students face difficulty in drafting a memorial. That being said, Drafting a good memorial is essential because it is the first step towards making an impression. Besides, the title of Best Memorial is a coveted one and most teams aspire to win it. Here’s your guide to draft a memorial, if you are hesitating or confused:
1. Break up the Issues
It is very important to bifurcate your memorial based on the issues. Read your moot problem thoroughly and dissect the facts based on issues. In some moot court competitions, issues are given. However, in others, teams need to frame their own issues in the moot court memorial. Thus, it becomes very important to identify the issues and break them into sub-issues and further on, depending on the requirement. This flowcharting makes comprehension easier for the teams as well as the judges and gives structure to the arguments.
2. Follow IRAC
IRAC stands for Issue, Rule, and Argument Conclusion. IRAC is an acronym for the order in which a moot court memorial must be drafted.
Issue: The first step to drafting the memorial would be stating the primary issue. Try and keeps the issues short and concise conveying the legal proposition involved aptly.
Rule: The next step would be stating the rule. This has two parts to it: firstly, it includes the statutory provisions which cover the given proposition; and secondly, stating the judicial precedents and the law established therein.
Argument: Next is putting forth your arguments. This is one of the most crucial aspects of drafting. Here, you are expected to apply the law to the facts of the case to prove your contentions. Be sure to keep in mind that this part should have substantial content while keeping it crisp.
Conclusion: Last would be the concluding remarks to briefly summarize your arguments and affirm your stand.
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3. Avoid too many Maxims
Don’t use too many maxims in your moot court memorial. Keep it simple and avoid using verbose language. Remember that using too many maxims does not make your memorial look fancy. (Read: Qualities of a Good Researcher) It is your extent of arguments and research put forth that makes your memorial attractive. So, don’t focus on using too many maxims and instead work on your research. Keep in mind that your drafting should be such that it can easily convey your point.
4. Be consistent throughout the Memorial
Be consistent throughout your memorial. Use all your arguments in your memorial and try including all its aspects. Do not leave any aspect which is given in the moot proposition. Be uniform across your memorial. Don’t cut copy paste from articles and blogs available on the internet. There are moot court competitions that do a plagiarism check of your moot court memorials as well. Properly cite all your authorities and avoid using different formats or drafting style across issues.
5. Use Simple Language
Do not use complicated terms while drafting your moot court memorial. Keep your sentences small and structure them well. Keep the language of the memorial simple as it will facilitate easy comprehension. The idea behind a good draft is to convey your arguments and back it up with appropriate authorities in a simple manner. Be sure to avoid redundant phrases. Avoid copying exact sentences from case-laws and rather summarize in your own words. Long sentences and complex phrases make it difficult for a reader to understand the arguments which is highly undesirable.
6. Check for Spelling and Grammatical Errors
Even a well-drafted memorial can lose out because of small typographical errors. A spelling mistake or a grammatical error gives a bad impression. Microsoft word has inbuilt features to check a document for any grammatical or spelling errors and it is advisable to run a check on the entire document once a draft is ready. Additionally, one can always use Grammarly for avoiding any grammatical mistakes.
Keeping in mind these points would make your moot court memorial well structured. Following the above steps will help you come up with the best results with minimal errors. Be sure to implement these points in the next draft you make. Check out the workshops and online memorial courses by Memo Pundits on memo drafting for more tips like these.
About the Author: Akshat Tiwari is student at NMIMS Kirit P Mehta School of Law, Mumbai. He likes mooting and is keen of doing research work.
About the Editor: Shivangi Bajpai is a graduate from National Law University Odisha. As a fresher in law school, she was a part of an online law school magazine called Ergo (lawyergo.com) which was largely a peer-connect platform for students from law fraternity. She has remarkable research skills and was a researcher in Henry Dunant Moot Court Competition, in her second year of law school. She considers herself a solution-oriented individual making her an effective problem solver.