Editing and plain English overwriting

Let our professional editors clean up your business documents, legal documents, manuscripts, essays, academic papers, books, and ebooks. Editing in Afrikaans, English, Xhosa, Zulu, French, and more.

Editing and plain English overwriting tasks are approached by first doing a brief scan of the entire document.

Next, an intensive edit, including any necessary rewriting/overwriting, is done from beginning to end. At this time, each word and sentence is checked. The editor works according to a comprehensive checklist to make sure that nothing is left out.

We work according to the acronym PLAIN*: Planned, Lean, Accurate, In the correct tense and active, and Nice and Neat.

* The PLAIN methodology was developed by Linda as part of a plain business writing course, successfully presented at prestigious clients such as PwC, Business Connexion and Absa Bank.

Rest assured:

  • All our editors have post-graduate qualifications and a minimum of five years' experience.
  • Our editors are carefully screened and tested to ensure that they comply with our strict standards.
  • Samples from each completed task are quality-checked by a different editor.

The legal position regarding plain language

The National Credit Act, section 64(1)-(3) reads as follows:

 

“(1) The producer of a document that is required to be delivered to a consumer in terms of this Act must provide that document –
(a) in the prescribed form, if any, for that document; or
(b) in plain language, if no form has been prescribed for that document.

  1. (2)  For the purposes of this Act, a document is in plain language if it is reasonable to conclude that an ordinary consumer of the class of persons for whom the document is intended, with average literacy skills and minimal credit experience, could be expected to understand the content, significance, and import of the document without undue effort, having regard to –

    1. (a)  the context, comprehensiveness and consistency of the document;

    2. (b)  the organisation, form and style of the document;

    3. (c)  the vocabulary, usage and sentence structure of the text; and

    4. (d)  the use of any illustrations, examples, headings, or other aids to reading

      and understanding.

  2. (3)  The National Credit Regulator may publish guidelines for methods of asses-

    sing whether a document satisfies the requirements of subsection (1)(b).” 

For more, see JM Otto in http://poseidon01.ssrn.com/delivery.php?ID=714022009114094070127069083111083126021037057034004075122020007076104025076117124117023061006041103116116085004010124074099117019027055089080086120065082090096082125063047077101073008111008071068080068127085027020107003126064122125018095088107095088083&EXT=pdf