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Answered By: Suzanne Schriefer, Criminal Justice & Paralegal Librarian
Last Updated: Apr 05, 2016     Views: 666

Paralegals are often required to draft legal memos.  The sections of a legal memorandum are:

  • Heading or Caption
  • Facts
  • Issue(s) Presented
  • Answer to Issue
  • Reasoning or Discussion
  • Conclusion

The Caption appears at the top of the page and contains this information:

The Facts section of the memo provides a formal and objective description of the legally significant facts in your research question.

The Issue(s) Presented is the subject of the memo presented as a question; How does the relevant law apply to the key facts of the research question?

Beginning with a conclusion (yes, no, probably yes, etc.),the Answer to Issue provides an explanation of the reasons for your conclusion.  This section is no more than four to five sentences.

The Reasoning or Discussion section educates the reader about the applicable legal principles, illustrates how those principles apply to the relevant facts, and explore any likely counter arguments.  This section is the heart of the memo.

This is followed a restatement of the Conclusion.

Example: