Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Predicting Outcome

A competitor writes:

It is very difficult to predict when an appeal will be successful or when a trial court judge may not see things your way...[O]ur customer is solely responsible for gauging the probability of successs given the applicable law.

Predicting outcome is integral to preparing any brief, not just to assessing whether to file one. From numerous arguments, Concision requires sacrificing the ineffective for the persuasive. How many arguments to retain? The decision involves not only which arguments are most persuasive but how persuasive is each, so the ghostwriter can stop arguing when persuasiveness dips. The ghostwriter cannot choose the best argument set without estimating the likelihood that each argument will persuade the court.

Shallow research undermines the brief itself. The ghostwriter who refuses to assess the likelihood of prevailing probably does not master the applicable law.

Thursday, June 12, 2008


Hirers of ghostwriters divide on wanting the best critical document or avoiding a practice-disrupting routine document. The wish pertaining decides the hours a project needs. Routine projects carry routine expectations, an unimportant demurrer going for five or six hours.

On a critical motion or appeal, the attorney would like victory assured to a practical certainty, a goal approachable but time-consuming to attain because the ghostwriter must pursue deeper understanding of the issues. He must not only know the dispositive holdings but understand why they must hold, understandings crucial to persuading the judge, rather than over-powering the opposition. Only if you persuade the judge can you be sure of prevailing.

The relationship is not linear between the ghostwriter's expertise and the hours needed to draft a critical document. With the writer's quickening apprehension of case law, he becomes more efficient over a five to ten year period. After that the writer continues to learn how to improve documents, so his best work takes longer.