Photo by Hunters Race on Unsplash

This article was originally published in The Lawyer.

Good verbal communication skills are widely regarded as integral to the practice of law. Among the general public, this impression has likely been fostered as a result of films and other media portrayals of lawyers which tend to focus on advocacy and adversarial proceedings.

The general public’s view is one thing, but in my experience the link between verbal communication skills and effective lawyering is shared by many people in senior positions within law firms. On several occasions it has been made clear to me — a person who, from time to…

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(Author’s note: an edited and shorter version of this post is available on Medium here)

In the context of the recent — and very welcome — discussion around prejudice and discrimination linked to fundamental personal characteristics such as race, sexuality and gender identity, the topic of this short article (potential prejudice and discrimination linked to a speech impediment) may seem somewhat trivial. I am not, however, seeking to draw any comparisons between, nor am I attempting to claim any degree of equivalence between, the different kinds of prejudice and discrimination that persist today. Indeed, it would be foolish — if…

Aonghus Heatley

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