If you are a lawyer, Legal English is and always will be your ticket to the elite world of international law.

Most leading companies want their lawyers to be able to communicate in modern legal English. So, mastering Legal English undoubtedly is and always will be one of the best investments you can make.

In most cases, Legal English uses words and statements that are rarely or never used outside of a legal sphere.

Of course, it is very important to constantly improve your Legal English skills and increase the level of qualification. But at the same time, you need to remember the old-fashioned style of legal writing with its specific, at times confusing vocabulary, and be able to use it correctly.

While drafting legal documents, we often find the words ‚hereby, thereby, whereby’, and we are much more addicted to these, but we need to be careful with these echoes of The Great Gatsby’s time.


All of these words are considered rather old-fashioned, and the modern style of legal writing and contract drafting is to use modern English phrases instead.

You will still need to learn the use of these terms however as you will find many documents and texts are sent to you that still contain this old-fashioned language.

These three words cause tremendous confusion for both lawyers and non-lawyers alike, regardless of whether or not they are native speakers of English.


So, what’s behind all this confusion? That’s actually pretty simple: the confusion is caused by the fact that the here, there and where words are prefixes. The endings of the words are very simple, in, on, to, with, of, by, and so on; however, when the prefixes are added, they become very old-fashioned and sound very different.


It’s nuts, right? But there’s no need to panic! In today’s article, we’ve listed the main points and prepared for you a very simple trick to understanding what each of these words means.

Here’s our little hint:

  • The ending of the word means exactly what it says, on means on, of means of, to means to, and so on.
  • The prefix ‘Here’ indicates that it is something in the document that is being read. e.g.
  • If something is written ‘herein’ then it means it is written here, in this document which you are reading.
  • If it is drawn ‘hereon’ then it is drawn here, on this document which you are reading.
  • If it is ‘hereby’ then it is given here by this document which you are reading.
  • The prefix ‘There’ indicates that it is in some other document other than the one you are reading, possibly, it is somewhere else – It is there in some other place.
  • If it is written ‘therein’ then it is written there in that other document.
  • If it is drawn ‘thereon’ then it is drawn there on that other document which may be in another place.
  • If it is a power given ‘thereby’, then it is given there by that other document, not the one which you are now reading.

But it was only flowers, berries – the words beginning with ‘where’ as this is the equivalent of ‘which’.

  • Whereby means by which e.g.

The contract dated 1 May 2018 whereby the company agreed to purchase the products.

  • Wherein means in which, or in which place e.g.

The contract dated 1 May 2018, wherein it is stated that…. This means ‘in which’ it is stated that ….’

  • Whereof means of what or of which, e.g.

The company one of the directors whereof is a foreign national.

  • Whereupon means immediately after which, e.g.

The sum of $10,000 shall be paid by the buyer to the seller whereupon the buyer’s liability to the Seller shall be discharged.

And lastly, do not forget about another important old-fashioned collection:

  • Whatsoever means ‘whatever’ – i.e. no matter what, in contractual meaning.
  • Wheresoever means ‘wherever’ – i.e. in whatever place in contractual meaning.
  • Howsoever means ‘however’ – i.e. in whatever way or to whatever extent in contractual meaning.

When translating or writing #legal texts in your non-native language, it’s essential to pay attention to these aspects, as providing the wrong word can lead to misunderstandings.

If you need to translate your #legal text into any language or want an error-free text, feel free to contact us. IURIDICO team will help you by #translating or #proofreading any your text!



Zapraszamy do zapoznania się z ofertą kursów w ramach programu #IURIDICOMasterClass kierowanych do przedstawicieli branży prawniczej i językowej.