Legal Printing: Why Font Matters

Fonts are something that often seem like an unimportant detail, but they shape our views more than you may realize at first. Legal documents are no exception to this rule. Lawyers often fall back on tried and true fonts like Times New Roman, but is this really for the best? Some will argue that using a standard font is expected or appropriate, while others argue that a legible, but less common font is desirable to break up the monotony of thousands of court filings. So which is right?

While using a standardized font, like Times New Roman is ingrained in academia and is often seen as the “correct” choice, courts have begun to push back against this assumption. The U.S. Supreme Court requires documents to be written in a font from the “Century” family of fonts, while the appellate court of Connecticut prefers briefs in Arial or Univers. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit not only recommends against Times New Roman, but points out that font choice influences how carefully the document is read, versus allowing it to be skimmed and quickly forgotten. It is agreed that a 12-point font is universally accepted as the common choice for font sizing.

When choosing a font for legal documents, there are several considerations. The font should be 12-point sized, and regularly spaced. Condensed type is difficult to read, so the natural space of the type should allow for space between the letters. The font should be clean and professional looking most of all. With a carefully prepared brief, it’s important to ensure that the time and effort that went into creating it isn’t wasted simply because your font choice was less than stellar.

Acro Photo Print Inc. has been offering New York City printing services for more than 40 years. Call (929) 244-4322 to learn how we can help you with your time-consuming legal print jobs.