The National Credit Act, Companies Act and Consumer Protection Act have some guidelines for Plain Language. These will determine if your document is in plain language.
- The content of the document. What does the document say?
- The level of comprehension of the document. What does your audience understand when reading the document?
- The consistency of information. Is the information in the document used in a uniform and consistent manner?
- The organisation and style of the document. Is the lay-out of the document easy to understand?
- The vocabulary used. Would your audience be able to understand the language you used in the document?
- The sentence structure. Are sentences short, concise and easy to read?
- Headings. Did you use headings to help guide your audience through the document?
- Illustrations and visual aids. Did you use any illustrations or diagrams to assist your audience in understanding the document?
Source: "Guidelines to writing in Plain Language" De Rebus July 2012
By Michele van Eck, Writers Write Consultant
Michele has a BComm in business management and law, as well as an LLB and an LLM. With specialized qualifications in corporate and contractual law, Michele writes for De Rebus and has co-authored articles for TSAR (a journal for South African law).
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