Writing Guide on How to Write a Law Essay

Writing guide
Posted on January 10, 2019

An essay is a form of an academic activity that allows a professor to evaluate the student’s knowledge on the studied subject. Taking a degree in law? Or studying law as a part of course at high school or college? No matter what is the reason why you need to write a law essay, focus on this academic activity to the fullest extent. Essay writing as an academic activity offers many advantages. Some of them are:

  • You learn to express ideas in a concise and well-structured manner;
  • You increase your knowledge through reliable sources of information;
  • You explore new topics for essays that may be quite specific to the field of study;
  • You build up your critical and analytical thinking skills, and so on.

In addition to all the benefits mentioned before, you have the chance to improve your academic performance by writing a good essay in Law. Get motivated to write an essay in Law right now? Don’t omit this law essay writing guide and read it to the end to make no mistake in your essay writing.

What You Should Know about Essays in Law

Remember you can’t start writing any essay without knowing what type of essays you are required to write. Being quite a specific and the most spread form of the academic activity, essays are divided into different categories. The main types of essays are as follows:

  • Narrative,
  • Descriptive,
  • Expository,
  • Persuasive.

Following the Harvard Law School curriculum, a series of writing and research projects is based on legal reasoning. It means that the most popular types of essays are expository and persuasive ones. While expository essays require the exploration of a certain law topic by the use of facts, statistics, and examples, the persuasive essays imply the “persuasion of a reader’ as the core aim of the activity by the presentation of facts and logical conclusions.

Can I Choose Any Topic for My Law Essay? Answers from Our Writers

The initial step for good writing any kind of academic paper is choosing a topic. As opposed to term papers, essays can be focused on a less extended range of topics to explore. And in contrast to research papers, essays require such topics that a student can present the analytical skills and own thoughts on the matter of discussion. Some instructors usually suggest a list of topics in accordance with the course readings and materials. But sometimes some professors allow students to brainstorm their ideas and choose any topic he/she would like to investigate. Certainly, the process of choosing the essay topic is much easier when a student already has a list of topics. However, if this does not happen to you, feel free to check the course materials on your own and find a topic you would like to write about.

First of all, the topic should be appropriate for the legal studies course. Secondly, you should understand what to focus on while persuading the reader or simply giving an opinion. Thirdly, you should present a sufficient number of academic literature or, in other words, credible sources which prove your opinion on the subject matter.

10 Appropriate Topics Vs. 5 Inappropriate Topics for Your Law Essay

The following list of topics has a purpose to guide you in the right direction by means of 10 possible topics for your essays on the law studies course:

  1. School Bullying: Will the Legislation of Bullying Laws Solve the Problem of School Bullying?
  2. Pros and Cons of Marriage: Do Civil Couples and Married Couples Have Similar Rights Today?
  3. Legislation on Prohibiting Infidelity: Is the Enactment of Such Laws Appropriate Nowadays?
  4. Juvenile Offenders Vs. Adult Offenders: Are They Punished Equally by Law?
  5. Trade of Marijuana or Any Other Drug: Legalize or Not?
  6. Sex Discrimination in Law Professions: Is It Top-of-the-Agenda?
  7. Is There a Need to Create Specific Legislation Aimed to Regulate the Religious Freedom?
  8. 5 Advantages of the Legalization of the Same-Sex Marriages?
  9. How to Improve the Law System to Prevent Racism in the Workplace?
  10. What Changes Should Be Made in the Regulation of Laws to Prevent Sexism in the Society?

The above-mentioned topics are simply examples, yet they can be modified according to your own preferences. Additionally, here are some topics which are not appropriate for the law paper. Most of them are simply irrelevant, unethical or do not require the depth of thought:

  1. The Income Tax and Its History;
  2. Is the Capital Punishment Appropriate in the 21st Century?
  3. Wage Price Controls During the Era of President Nixon;
  4. How Tax Levels Influence the Economic Growth;
  5. The History of the Voting Procedures.

How to Write a Title for My Law Essay to Catch an Eye

While writing a title for an essay, you should take into consideration the following functions of a title:

  • Titles inform about what a piece of writing is going to cover;
  • Titles grab the reader’s attention (and only well-invented titles are able to perform it!);
  • Titles reflect on the purpose and tone of writing;
  • Titles contain some keywords that simplify the access to a piece of writing through an online/computer search.

Let’s work with the title, “Legal Regulation of Religious Freedom” Besides providing the key concepts used in the law essay, there is nothing more valuable for a good title to attract the reader’s attention. Only the professor, who has to read an essay, will read it. It does not allow the professor understand the purpose and tone of writing, the student’s attitude towards the problem. Instead, the title “Why Is Specific Legislation Important for the Regulation of the Religious Freedom?” explains the writer’s attitude and informs the reader concisely about the concepts used in the essay.

Additionally, if you are interested in attracting attention to your essay, make it with the help of some words like ‘today’, ‘nowadays’, ‘current’, ‘recent’, etc. Know why it may work for you? The reader can conclude that you write on the modern situation that is closer to him than the issue relevant to the Aristotle’s era. At least, you can always look at the legal issues from various time perspectives comparing them. It is also interesting to follow. Don’t forget to mention it in your essay title.

How to Create a Valid Thesis Statement for My Law Essay

The thesis statement is the next detail of any academic form of writing which contains the core concept the writer is going to persuade the reader in or just explain it. The thesis statement becomes substantial when it answers the main question of the topic the student explores. Besides, a well-developed thesis statement allows the reader to understand what the paper will reveal them if they decide to familiarize with it. In the topic “Why Is Specific Legislation Important for the Regulation of the Religious Freedom,” the thesis statement may sound as following: “The legislation associated with the regulation of the religious freedom is important as it prevents the emergence of dangerous religious groups.” Only stating that the laws on the regulation of the religious freedom are important is not enough as the main function of the thesis statement is the presentation of reasons that prove one’s attitude towards the issue and serve as evidence for the persuading process. Keeping that in mind, the following algorithm appears to be effective while writing a valid thesis statement:

  1. Ask a question: Should the government pass laws which regulate the religious freedom?
  2. Answer the question: The government should initiate the laws that regulate the religious freedom.
  3. Add the reasons that explain the above-mentioned idea: The government should initiate the laws which regulate the religious freedom because such laws prevent the emergence of dangerous religious groups and cults.

thesis statement guide

In the process of writing, the thesis statement can be slightly changed due to the addition of information that proves or refutes the basic idea of the essay. Work on the thesis statement as required.

Where to Search for Credible Sources of Information for My Law Essay?

While writing an academic paper, it is advisable for a student to use additional sources besides the course materials. The credible information sources allow the law students to find some case decisions from courts, legal acts and regulations, law reports and journals, constitutions, treaties, and so on. All these sources can be found at:

  1. HeinOnline allows the students search for credible law articles;
  2. Westlaw offers a variety of court cases;
  3. LexisNexis for Law Schools provides the legal, government, business and high-tech information sources.

Watch the tutorial on how to use one of the given sources:


Additionally, you can consult Google Books or Google Scholar to find the necessary books and peer-reviewed articles online. Meanwhile, a student can categorize the sources by their importance. For instance, some law articles and law digests contain the most valuable information, while such sources as textbooks, editorials, and encyclopedias are considered less important in terms of being a proof for the student’s argumentation. It is recommended to familiarize with the information in the sources to examine facts and explore the question of the essay. At the same time, a student can find the arguments that prove his or her position towards the question or refute it.

How to Outline My Law Essay? – Logically!

Usually, a law essay contains the same parts as any other academic text does. The traditional essay consists of five parts which are an introduction, three body paragraphs, and a conclusion. The introductory part usually aims at familiarizing the reader with the general information about the topic and the issue. For instance, the introduction to the essay “Why Is Specific Legislation Important for the Regulation of the Religious Freedom” may contain the information about the history of the religious freedom being regulated by law. The thesis statement is usually the last sentence of the introduction.

The body paragraphs present the explanation of the reasons mentioned in the thesis statement. As for the analyzed topic connected to the religious freedom, the body paragraphs may present some court cases which prove that the lack of religious control leads to the increase of criminal activities among some religious groups that promote human sacrifices. The more evidence the student finds, the more valid his or her arguments become. While exploring the court cases and real historical evidence, a student should ask himself or herself a “What if…?” question; for instance, “What if the law which demands all churches be legalized and controls all their activities existed?” Suggesting a possible scenario will allow the student to demonstrate the need for the regulation of the religious freedom. One of the body paragraphs for the essay which reveals the topic associated with the regulation of the religious freedom may sound as the following:

The implementation of appropriate laws which regulate the religious activity is crucial in order to define whether the new religious groups are dangerous or not. For instance, the activities of the Hernandez Brothers’ cult could have been identified timely, and that could have saved the life of victims if only the police were obliged to check the activities of all the existing religious groups. With that in mind, the need to regulate the religious freedom and intervene in any sort of suspicious religious activity is necessary in order to prevent the spread of criminal acts.

Writing a body paragraph may appear tricky for a student at first. However, the process is actually clear. First of all, the body paragraph contains such elements as a topic sentence, one or more details (pieces of evidence), and a concluding sentence. A topic sentence is usually one of the reasons mentioned in the thesis statement, while details are evidence for the reason, and a concluding sentence is a part that summarizes the importance of the discussed argument.

essay sandwich

The conclusion is the last part of the essay that commonly demonstrates the results of the research and the study of the issue to the reader. The conclusive part usually contains the paraphrased thesis statement and the evidence for it.

Checking the Grammar and Detecting Plagiarism

After a student finishes writing the essay, it is advisable to check if the paper contains grammar mistakes and plagiarized parts. While checking the essay, a student should also check whether the text corresponds to the professor’s rubric as well as whether it consists of logically connected parts. Pay attention to the body paragraphs that should be presented in the proper order. A student may read the paper out loud or ask someone to do it. This way help you detect some mistakes that are missed while only reading. Additionally, the word count and the number of pages should also correspond to the paper instructions as well as the citation format should do.

Meanwhile, using the additional software aimed at effective grammar checking and plagiarism detection is highly recommended. One of the most effective modern grammar checkers is Grammarly. The program is free to use. Don’t hesitate to benefit from using it on your own. At the same time, the program not only detects mistakes but also improves the academic writing skills. The most efficient software which detects plagiarism is Turnitin. It is probably the most popular tool for detecting plagiarism in the American university surroundings.

What Can Help Me Write My Essay in Law?

Each educational institution has writing centers which can provide professional advice on the academic writing. However, if a student decides to find information by himself or herself, then many guiding books on the academic writing appear to be helpful in this case. Such sources are divided into various categories starting from books on academic writing for international students to books for professional academic writers. There are many popular sources aimed at helping students with the academic writing process:

  • The Craft of Research by Wayne C. Booth teaches one how to choose credible sources for the paper, find valid arguments for the reader’s persuasion, and how to generally build the logical text.
  • Writing with Power by Peter Elbow is a guiding book on academic writing that explores various techniques that can improve one’s writing, for instance, the technique of free-writing.
  • Academic Writing for Graduate Students: Essential Tasks and Skills by John M. Swales and Christine B. Feak is another book that may contribute to improving the quality of the academic texts. The source is one of the most significant guides on academic writing as it tells the reader about the stages of the writing process and how to organize it while presenting a set of rules and exercises in the field of academic writing.

This guide will be helpful for you if you follow all the law essay writing tips immediately after reading them. So look through our advice on how to write an essay in Law and start writing it as required by your instructor – properly and academically correctly!

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