Ep. 41 - Transforming Legal Language: The Art of Plain English with Andrew Pegler (Australia)

plain language preventive & proactive law Feb 29, 2024

Dive deep into the art of transforming complex legal documents into clear and accessible language with our guest, Andrew Pegler, on this episode of the Legal Creatives podcast! πŸŽ™οΈ

🌏 Based in Melbourne, Australia, Andrew brings over two decades of expertise in plain English, design, and strategic communications. He is the Founder of Andrew Pegler Media (APM) - an award winning Plain English training, editing and writing agency that works on the Einstein principle that everything should be as simple as possible but not one but simpler.

At APM, they passionately connect many of their clients - including the Australian Commonwealth and Victorian State Governments - to their audience with clear, concise, engaging copy and form part of the global trend towards plain English. Of course, they never change the meaning or intent of any wording, we just make it much more accessible. βœοΈ

🌐 In this episode, Andrew passionately advocates for inclusive communication, removing the burden of self-importance from language. Plain language, according to him, is about achieving clarity at the first read, ensuring information is comprehensible to a diverse audience. He emphasizes that everyone to embrace plain language techniques, highlighting that with a sincere desire to inform and basic writing understanding, anyone can develop this crucial skill. 

Andrew has judged the legal category of NZ Plain English Awards annually since 2019 and the Legal Category Australia’s Clear Communications Awards. πŸ†  His essay in the prestigious Clarity Journal, the international journal promoting plain legal language, was called The brand advantages of plain English contracts

 πŸŒŸ Key Takeaways:

  1. Clarity Over Complexity: Plain language is not about dumbing down content, but about making legal information clear and accessible. 
  2. Transform Technical Language: Avoid repetitions and ensure straightforwardness. It more often possible than not to write with more more familiar words instead of technical jargon. 
  3. Everyone Can Learn: Developing plain language skills is within reach for anyone with a genuine desire to inform.
  4. Injecting Humor: Weaving humor into serious discourse is an art that enhances engagement without compromising on the importance of the message.
  5. Training Matters: Investing in training for plain English helps master the techniques and rules for effective communication.

⏰ Don't miss Andrew's interview on the art of Plain English! Here are some examples of his work using Plain English! 

🀝 Connect with Andrew Pegler on LinkedIn for a deeper dive into plain language and share this podcast with colleagues curious about how to make legal information clear and accessible.

🌐 Ready to explore more? Immerse yourself in previous episodes for interviews, case studies, and insights into the fascinating world of legal innovation and design and subscribe to the Legal Creatives newsletter to stay in the loop: legalcreatives.com/newsletter πŸ’™