I know that novel or story type books do not use a period after quotations, such as:
Momma Bear then said to Baby Bear: "Wake up little one!" Baby Bear replied: "Not today momma!"
However, suppose that I am typing professional legal documents that do not necessarily
follow the format of short stories. Wouldn't it make more sense to use a period
after a quotation block in order to establish the end of sentence?? Here is an example
of the document:
Bob then stated "Oh go to hell. I ain't talking to you!". I then told him that I would
not leave until he talked with me. Bob angrily replied "Screw off!". Due to the
fact Bob would not talk, I decided to leave him alone.

I have two quotes in the above paragraph which have periods after the quotes. Is that
wrong?? I want to use periods to mark off the end of the each sentence. What is
your opinion about this??
Thanks!
I know that novel or story type books do not use a period after quotations, such as: Momma Bear then ... I want to use periods to mark off the end of the each sentence. What is your opinion about this??

Logically, you are right: there are two sentences, one nested inside the other, and you may well think that each needs its own concluding punctuation mark. But punctuation isn't entirely a matter of logic: it arises from tradition and is maintained by convention. There are various different traditions and conventions, notably as between American and British usage, and to some extent these may be modified by individual writers; but I think all would reject the addition of a final period (British "full stop") when the nested sentence and the outer sentence end at the same point and the nested sentence has its own exclamation or question mark. If you sent something punctuated your way to a publisher, or even a newspaper letters page, your period would simply be deleted. So don't do it.

One crucially important caveat: if you are typing a legal document, there may be a special legal convention about punctuation, so that what I've just said doesn't apply. Perhaps legally qualified people in this Group will comment?
There is a similar but not identical problem with this kind of thing: or
I don't know how these should be punctuated, and in practice would try to re-write the sentences.
Alan Jones
I know that novel or story type books do not ... of the each sentenc=e. What is your opinion about this??

Logically, you are right: there are two sentences, one nested inside the other, and you may well think that each ... and in practice would try to re-write the sentences. Alan Jones- Hide quoted text - - Show quoted text -

In American legal text, do not use that period. Also, in American legal text, the usual American punctuation rule applies: commas and periods inside the quotes, colons and semi-colons outside the quotes, question marks and exclamation points inside if they are with the quoted material but outside if they are for the whole sentence. Your example should be:
Bob then stated "Oh, go to hell. I ain't talking to you!" I then told him that I would not leave until he talked with me. Bob angrily replied "Screw off!" Due to the fact Bob would not talk, I decided to leave him alone.
Note the comma inserted after Oh.
Further, in American English, sentences get one sentence-ending bit of punctuation: a period or a question mark or an exclamation point. "Did he really ask 'Where do I live?'" is correct. "Did he really shout 'Go to Hell'"? is probably better than "Did he really shout 'Go to Hell!'" to emphasize that the whole sentence is a question.

Cece (who has typed in lawyers' offices)
Site Hint: Check out our list of pronunciation videos.
However, suppose that I am typing professional legal documents that do not necessarily follow the format of short stories. ... period after a quotation block in order to establish the end of sentence?? Here is an example of the document:

Better to ask this on misc.legal.moderated .
If you are inclined to email me
for some reason, remove NOPSAM :-)