Larry Pryor in Los Angeles Times
Writing letters of recommendation can be hazardous&md;tell the truth and you might get sued if the contents are negative. Robert Thornton, a professor at Lehigh University, has a collection of "virtually litigation-proof" phrases called the Lexicon of Intentionally Ambiguous Recommendations, or LIAR.
Here are some examples:
1. To describe an inept person&md;"I enthusiastically recommend this candidate with no qualifications whatsoever."
2. To describe an ex-employee who had problems getting along with fellow workers&md;"I am pleased to say that this candidate is a former colleague of mine."
3. To describe an unproductive candidate&md;"I can assure you that no person would be better for the job."
4. To describe an applicant not worth consideration&md;" I would urge you to waste no time in making this candidate an offer of employment."