Forms (also known as model or standard documents) are sample versions of legal documents such as pleadings or agreements constructed to assist the lawyer with the drafting process. Knowledge of how to locate and responsibly use forms is a valuable skill for a lawyer.
Forms come from a variety of places. Form books collect forms on a specific subject in one place. Many treatises and practice guides include forms alongside their other content or as an appendix at the end. Lastly, searchable databases provide online access to forms across a wide range of practice areas.
Using forms can provide several benefits in your legal research and drafting. However, forms must be used responsibly. It is essential to understand a form as a starting point in the research and drafting process rather than a finished fill-in-the-blank document.