Brendan Kenny

Brendan Kenny

Brendan Kenny is an attorney at Blackwell Burke PA in Minneapolis, Minnesota practicing in the areas of toxic tort, products liability, and other complex litigation. He is convinced that the legal system would work better if attorneys thought more like trial lawyers and less like litigators.

The Secret Style Guide the Supreme Court Doesn’t Want You to Read

You can't get any higher than supreme. So when the public gets a glimpse into the inner workings of the Supreme Court, it's a big deal.

Lawyers, Stop Writing (and Saying) These Things Immediately

Wherever lawyers stand on legalese, they should, at least, stand on reason.

LegalBoard Legal Keyboard

First Look: LegalBoard

The LegalBoard is a keyboard designed just for lawyers. It gives you one-click access things lawyers need frequently, such as legal symbols, portions of citations, and track changes. Here is our first look.

Lawyers, Ignore The Power of Visuals at Your Own Peril

Sometimes, visuals are the key to understanding—or even winning—a case, but lawyers routinely fail to use them.

Hey Hey, Ho Ho, 19th Century Fonts Have Got to Go

Lawyers are fixated on fonts and typographical rules that went out of style decades ago. We can do better.

Why Hyperbole Will Destroy Your Case and Understatement Will Save It

Lawyers often give in to the temptation of overstatement and bombast, but attorneys can often strengthen their case with understatement instead.

How Scare Quotes Are Saving Legal Writing

If lawyers stop disarming themselves by using legalese, maybe they won't need scare quotes. Until then, we'll have to put up with them. A baby step in the right direction is much better than nothing.

The Death of Leading Questions?

Take this test. Watch a cross-examination from almost any televised trial. You’ll probably find it’s pretty bad, maybe even as bad as Cristina Gutierez’s cross-examination of an expert witness (ending at 2:03) in the Adnan Syed case (the topic of last year’s Serial podcast): Getting it Right Any lawyer who fails on cross forfeits a major opportunity […]

The Best Moments From Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney

Who is Phoenix Wright? He's an improbable video game trial lawyer whose only superpower is that he's a really good lawyer... sort of. Gamemaker Capcom describes him as" the rookie defense lawyer new to the scene with the wildest cross-examination skills in town." That's one way of putting it.

How the Solicitor General’s Style Guide Calls Out Bad Legal Writing

In addition to taking a stand in favor of the "case law" usage, the Guide makes some important recommendations in favor of the active voice, plain language, and more elegant typography.