Noted UCLA Law Professor Dies
Jan. 04, 2000
LOS ANGELES (AP) _ David Mellinkoff, a law professor who campaigned against bad legal writing, has died at 85.
Mellinkoff, who died Friday, wrote about the legal profession and its language in five books, including ``The Language of the Law'' in 1963, which led to movements to control legalese, and ``Legal Writing: Sense and Nonsense.''
A professor at the University of California at Los Angeles, for 20 years, Mellinkoff waged war against what he called ``contagious verbosity.''
``The most effective way of shortening law language is for judges and lawyers to stop writing,'' he once wrote.
At his urging, California established a commission to simplify the state constitution and set up an agency to review regulations for clarity.
He attended Stanford and Harvard Law School and went into private practice in Beverly Hills in 1939. He was an Army captain during World War II.