In the last newsletter, I offered "Six Questions to Ask the Partner Before Starting Your Research Assignment." Since you’ve no doubt been getting plenty of research assignments as a result of following that sage advice (right?), I now offer you seven questions to ask yourself before handing in those projects.
1. Have I Briefly Oriented the Reader?
Yes, your introduction should tell the reader what the partner asked you to research, but your findings section should briefly identify where your assignment fits into the broader law as well. Take a step back. Does your memo jump in to a subrule without identifying the rule itself? Does it discuss an exception to an exception? Your partner may be thinking of something she read in isolation, and it will be helpful to her to see where it fits.
I say briefly for a reason—you don’t want to hand in [Your Name] on Torts if the partner just needed to know about the economic loss rule. But, again, do spend a few sentences explaining how things fit together; this not only will help her now but also will be useful in turning your memorandum into a motion or opposition.