Solve brief formatting problems with
Brief Builder’s Workshop

Are you:

  • Frustrated by seemingly arbitrary court brief formatting requirements?
  • Stuck trying to figure out how to translate those requirements into “how to do this in Word”?
  • Under the gun to get it all out the door NOW?

Legal brief formatting requirements can be maddening! And to add insult to injury, courts don’t typically provide any guidance on how to actually make Word do what they require you to do. As far as they’re concerned, that’s your job.

Frustrated woman crumpling paper

Couple that with the tight deadlines you’re typically under, and it quickly becomes a situation that makes you want to stand up and scream!

You can’t risk having your brief rejected or flagged by the court for formatting issues. So you need help … now.

Here’s what we’ll cover in the course

Brief Builder’s Workshop consists of 12 lessons organized into 3 modules. Here’s a guide to what we’ll cover together:

Table of Authorities

Seven separate, sequential lessons taking you through the entire Table of Authorities process, from marking the first citation of any authority and then any subsequent citations (yes, the process is different) to inserting a properly-formatted TOA into your document, plus targeted solutions to common problems TOA users experience.

Table of Contents

You’ve got two different ways you can create a Table of Contents: one’s easier but less flexible; the other gives you more options but is a bit more complex to set up. I not only show you both methods, I also show you how to tweak the formatting (indentation, page numbers, spacing between entries) in a way that doesn’t get destroyed when you update.

Using Sections to control
page #s, etc.

One of the most common elements of court brief requirements is different page numbers for the introductory material (cover page, Table of Authorities, Table of Contents, and any required statements) versus the brief itself. Once you know how Sections work and how to embed the right fields into your footer, you’ll wonder how you ever produced a brief without it!

Automatic Numbering

Go far beyond simply numbering paragraphs (a.k.a linline numbering) and learn how to build automatic numbering with text (e.g., Section I), numbered headings (e.g., I. Uncontroverted Facts), saving your custom numbering schemes as List Styles, and lead-in numbered text with Style Separators. Using automatic numbering not only saves time when editing, it opens up all sorts of cross-referencing possibilities!

Footnotes & endnotes

Inserting a footnote or endnote is pretty easy – just go to the References tab and click Insert Footnote (or Endnote). But how do you control the formatting options like separator lines or the font size or spacing between footnotes? And what about footnotes brought over from WordPerfect? This module dives deep into the details so you can finely control how your footnotes/endnotes look and behave.

Field Codes & Switches

This module is still under construction, but when complete, it’ll cover such features as automatically inserting a word count into document (and the pitfalls of doing so), plus more sophisticated TOA and TOC formatting using the built-in switches for those markup fields. For example, have you ever wanted to create a Table of Contents for just one section of a document? It’s possible!

Here’s a behind-the-scenes tour of the course:

Frequently Asked Questions

During the checkout process, you’ll be asked for your email and you’ll choose your own user id and password. (If you’re already enrolled in one of my other courses, you should log in at this point so all your courses will be associated with the same user ID.) Those credentials will be what you’ll need to log into the course (see below).

Your purchase receipt (which you’ll receive via email automatically as soon as you enroll) will have a link to the first lesson and detailed instructions on how to log in. That same link will also appear on the purchase confirmation page online after your payment is processed.

You’ll also automatically receive a series of emails that will guide you through the course and give you detailed login instructions at the bottom of each email.

Go to https://legalofficeguru/login and use the login form:

There’s also a Course Login button in the top menu on every page of my site:

You have lifetime access to the course! As long as this site is up and running, you can come back and go through the lessons at your leisure.

If you decide within 60 days of purchase that the course isn’t right for you, email me at [email protected], and I’ll process your refund within 24 hours. No questions asked! Depending on your bank or card, it may take 2-3 days for the refund to show up in your account.

Online services like Lynda and Udemy are great for picking up new skills. But the courses I feature here at Legal Office Guru not only teach you these same skills but apply them directly to the law office/legal department context. You’ll see how to use these skills in documents like the ones you work with everyday.

Click here to see a 2-minute video tour of the lesson interface.

Unfortunately, no. This course only covers the Windows versions from 2007 through 2019 and Microsoft 365.

Email me your question at [email protected] – I’ll get back to you as quickly as I can!

Yes, I want to build better briefs!

Brief Builders Workshop

Features covered include:

Table of Authorities

Auto Table of Contents 2 ways

Different page nos. by section

Footnotes & endnotes

Automatic paragraph numbers including List Styles and numbered headings

Pleading paper templates