Assignment: Communicating Effectively in Writing Through a “Predictive” Office Memo

A legal memorandum serves many different functions. Sometimes, you are asked to take the law and argue that the law is in your client’s favor. Other times you might be asked to argue how that law specifically defeats your opponent’s case. This is known as “persuasive” writing—the memorandum seeks to persuade the reader of a specific idea.

In the “memo” below, your job is not to persuade, but rather to research, and apply the law. To “tell it like it is.” Your boss is asking you to apply a case to your client’s particular facts and let her know if the case is going to help or hurt her new client, Sam Nguyen. You are asked to make a prediction—and write a “predictive” or objective legal memorandum. This memo will go to your boss, not the court, which is known as an “interoffice” (within the office) memorandum.

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To: Paralegal

From: Attorney Susan Maruca

Re: Client/ Sam Nguyen; Postsecondary Child Support

Date: May 19, 2019

I was just hired to represent the obligor in a child support case in Allegheny County Domestic Relations Court (Pennsylvania). The last time I represented someone in a similar situation, the Blue v. Blue case was in effect. Can you pull the case in Nexis Uni, write a memo briefing Blue, and let me know if it is still good law? Thanks.

Assignment Directions

Respond to the memo above by writing an objective or predictive memorandum.
The memo must include a case brief using the IRAC method.
The memo must be properly cited using Bluebook citations.

 

In your predictive memo – identify your issue, then focus on predicting how the judge will rule on the issue.

Please see the sample predictive memo below.

 

Sample Predictive Memo: https://www.law.cuny.edu/legal-writing/students/memorandum/memorandum-3/

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