Northern District rules recognized for clear writing

March 19, 2015

A group that supports plain writing in government and business has given an award of distinction to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana for a rewrite of its rules.

The court will receive the ClearMark Award of Distinction from the Center for Plain Language on May 12 at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. The entry also is eligible for the Best of Public Sector and Government Before & After Award. Recipients of that award also are eligible to win the Grand ClearMark Award — the top honor for all 2015 nominations. All awards will be presented at the May 12 event.

South Bend attorneys Brian Kubicki and Tom Vetne initiated the redrafting of rules in 2012, and the changes were approved by a committee. The aim was to make the rules clearer, more concise and more comprehensible.   

By eliminating legalese, redundancies, passive voice and making other changes, the word count of the rules was reduced by about 20 percent.  


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