IRAC-style essay is an analytical writing for legal studies. The acronym stands for Issue, Rule, Application, and Conclusion. This format allows critical analysis of a court case and its application for general legal practice.
When writing an IRAC-style essay, it is important to divide the essay into corresponding sections. It is also possible to add the “Facts” and “Background” subsections if you want to. You may use a table format or create the subsection titles. As a result, the paper will have about the following structure:
|Facts (optional)||Before beginning the I.R.A.C.-format analysis, you may use this subsection to list major facts related to the legal case under discussion.|
|Background (optional)||Explain the legal case background if necessary. Provide factors which affect the rule application but is not obvious from the very case description.|
|Issue||Spot the issue, i.e. summarize and interpret the legal case. Explain what it means and what its significance for the modern society is. What will happen if court decisions will be same for all similar cases? What if the opposite?|
|Rule||Mention applicable rules and explicate why or why not they should be applied to the facts of this case. Rules can be found in laws, regulations, and precedents.|
|Application||Apply the mentioned rules to the legal case and analyze the results. Use logical reasoning and provide arguments based on the evidence and your analysis.|
|Conclusion||Conclude the essay by generalizing the application section to the higher (societal) level. What consequences does this legal case have for the community? Does the application mean that the law/regulations need a revision? Use holdings and a disposition whenever required.|
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