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Todays Headlines - PowerPoint


									Extra! Extra! Legal Research on the Go

Answers to Legal Questions on a News Deadline
Constance Ard, Law Librarian Greenebaum Doll & McDonald Louisville Kentucky 502-587-3721 or

Today’s Headlines
 Staying Informed

• Meeting the challenge of information overload
 Identifying sources

• Finding Quality & Reliability; Efficiently
 Journalist Friendly Pathfinders

 Real Life

• Applying theory to your real deadlines, demands and resources

Staying Informed
How journalists can get the story without blowing their top


• news, e-mail delivery, broad coverage with a legal focus

• Articles, news feeds, discussion lists

• Better for librarians but useful to anyone interested in trends in the legal field

Identifying Sources
How to find quality, reliable experts on a Deadline
  Wexis

• Westlaw Reference Attorneys and Expert Files • Lexis Customer Support and Expert Files

 Librarian colleagues

• Law librarians share well--especially with News librarians

Wexis: Customer Service Stars

Westlaw Reference Attorneys
• 1-800-REF-ATTY


• 1-800-543-6862 Both services provide search assistance and guidance of a supreme quality as well as useful tools on their websites

Law Librarian Colleagues
Where to find the “Hidden Element”

Virtual Chase
• This site maintained by Genie Tyburskie offers a wealth of resources & a daily update

• A community of librarians contributing to the knowledge base updated twice a month


Ask Law Librarian
• Gives the basics of the field


• Directories are available from both organizations

Getting In-depth Info on a Deadline
 Virtual Chase   Legal Information Institute--Cornell  Washburn University School of Law  ALSO.COM

I’ve got to find this ___, aka “needle in a haystack!!!” NOW!!!
A few pointers from a law librarian’s position •Stay calm and focused

Practical Applications

•Ask the requestor three questions
•What’s the deadline? •What format do want it delivered in •What’s the purpose •Plan your strategy

Real Estate Finding Public Records
 Problem:

John Smith bought a house for $3 million last July. What’s the address?

Use NetOnline You can check home sales by address, neighborhood or price range and date.

 Solution:

Litigation Where and How to Search
 Problem:

Environmental Claims and Suits against the military for pilot training Never underestimate the power of a News search or the results of a Google search. More formal searches can be done on Westlaw and Lexis. Limit your search to a specific jurisdiction and its even easier.

 Solutions:

Finding a Case
In the pursuit of justice, while justice is being pursued
 Problem: Find the complaint and answer

and the docket for the lawsuit.
 BACKGROUND: James v. filed last

summer in Federal District Court. It involves James, who posted on about ABC Company. The company was blasted under a pseudonym. ABC subpoenaed’s records for the true name. James was an employee who was then fired .

Election, election
Candidates Records Reflect their true stance on issues
 Problem:  How to find out what a candidate really

does when in the power seat of a judge?  What’s the judge’s record for appeals?  Solution:  Caselaw search shows his opinion  Search on Lexis in Appeals court: priorhistory(name)

Costs of Prosecution
 Problem

• What is the average cost of the prosecution of a death penalty case?
 Solution

• Legal news search • Search the State Government site, attorney general etc. for studies done within the state • Search the US Courts site or the Dept. of Justice • General Google Search

Legislative History
 Problem

• When was tax increment financing made legal by the Texas Legislature?
 Solution

• Find the statute, check the “History.” For more details on Legislative histories see specific Legislative Research bodies of individual states. TX has an online guide.

Finding Cases Sources

Cases in progress
• Docket sheets, news stories (including legal news) • Court Express, • Pacer • Casestream • Individual court sites


Finalized cases
• Lexis, Westlaw, and others • LOISLAW, • Versuslaw, • National Law Library • Individual Court Sites.

Finding Cases Search Strategies
 Lexis, Westlaw, use the smallest database

possible if you’re looking for cases on a particular topic  Loislaw, Versuslaw, and the National Law Library offer affordable pricing, be wary of coverage and usability.  Search individual court sites by docket or browse their opinions by date.

Legal Research Keys
 Google provides great starting place even

leading to specialty sites like Virtual Chase and Governmental documents
 Use Lexis customer service  Stay calm; use colleagues, pathfinders, and

the legal news sites to get started

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