Ambiguity in legal writing has been called “the lawyer’s curse”. It is difficult to spot because legal drafters “are too close to their writing to notice it”. As the case study in this article illustrates, special attention must be paid to avoiding ambiguity when drafting complex lists containing numerous items.


avoiding ambiguity; complex lists; appropriate punctuation; parallel usage convention; conjunction; O’Connor v Oakhurst Dairy; grammatical structures; consistency; clarity; interpretational issues