Legal English Course

The Hieronymus Legal English Course was specifically designed for lawyers, legal interns and assistants, and members of the non-legal staff of Swiss law firms working in an international environment, where they are regularly called on to advise and correspond with clients in English.

All courses, including the teaching material and reference documents, were conceived by the Hieronymus team itself, drawing on their expertise in the terminology and phraseology of legal English combined with their knowledge of Swiss law.

Our standard course "Swiss Law in English" is offered annually in cooperation with the Junior Bar Association of Geneva, hosted by Banque Pictet. To receive information on the next course dates, please register here.

Course structure

Part I Key notions and civil procedure

This workshop is designed to help you:

  • cite in proper form the various legal sources and authorities (legal texts, case law, scholarly literature and other publications);
  • explain Swiss civil procedure (e.g. stages of civil proceedings, jurisdiction and forum, parties to proceedings, types of judgements, structure of pleadings, appeal procedures);
  • properly use expressions of time in connection with time limits and limitation periods;
  • write your own legal correspondence (e.g. drafting of a notice of default, legal correspondence etiquette, logical connectors).

Included in the course materials you receive is a set of standard document templates, numerous bilingual vocabulary sheets relating to various specific topics (Swiss and European legislative acts, federal courts and administrative authorities, judiciary system of the cantons of Geneva and Vaud, annotated lists of “false friends” in French and English usage).

Part II The law of obligations and company law

This second workshop is designed, above all, to supply practical tools for lawyers who regularly interact with English-speaking clients and are called upon to:

  • explain the terms of an agreement to their clients or to draft contractual clauses in English on their own;
  • handle contract dispute cases;
  • handle corporate law transactions;
  • advise business clients.

The workshop is divided into six parts:

  • Key notions in the law of obligations, general vocabulary and standard expressions (e.g. conclusion and performance of contracts; claims and obligations; guarantees; default and non-performance; damages; termination)
  • Standard contractual clauses
  • Contract types
  • Use of modal verbs in contracts (can, could, may, might, shall, must, have to)
  • Key notions of company law, general vocabulary and standard expressions (e.g. structure of corporate groups, classes of shares, standard clauses in shareholders' agreements and merger agreements, articles of association, balance sheets and profit and loss statements)
  • Types of companies and key features of main types

Included in the course materials you receive is a set of standard document templates, as well as numerous bilingual vocabulary sheets on the various topics covered in the workshop (list of contract types, table of legal entities, corporate group structures, articles of association of a corporation, model balance sheet and P&L statement, annotated list of "false friends", etc.).

Part III Debt enforcement and bankruptcy law

The third workshop has a more specific focus, dealing with the uniquely Swiss procedures for debt enforcement and bankruptcy proceedings: ex parte attachment procedures, debt enforcement procedures, composition procedures and agreements and, in particular, international bankruptcy proceedings.

The course material you receive includes bilingual charts outlining the different procedures and numerous bilingual vocabulary sheets relating to the various subjects dealt with in the workshop.

Course material

Our course material is also suitable for self-teaching and is designed to be used as quick reference material for finding answers to frequent day-to-day questions when writing legal English: .

Part I: Legal English-Course
Key notions and civil procedure

Order

Part II: Legal English-Course
The law of obligations and company law

Available in Mai 2020

Part III: Legal English-Course
Debt enforcement and bankruptcy law

Available in September 2020