Skeleton arguments are gaining such popularity that their drafting has become an essential skill, says Paul Newman

In the good old days, the seasoned advocate rolled out of bed, grabbed his papers and ambled down to court. Apart from a brief perusal of the file or brief, the advocate relied upon his innate ability to build an instantaneous rapport with the judge. Admittedly, as Rumpole knew full well, there were certain judges positioned outside the behavioural norms of the human race, but they were an occasional annoyance sent by whatever force to vex and annoy.

Perhaps this picture is a little fanciful and the virtues of hard work and preparation have always been necessary precursors to performing in court. Where life has undoubtedly changed for the modern legal practitioner is in the increased emphasis on written submission at the expense of...

Jean-Yves Gilg
Solicitors Journal

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