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Shepard’s Citations and Other Citators Is the Authority Still Good Law? What are Citators? A citator is a tool to discover whether the authority in which you wish to rely has been cited elsewhere, and if so, how it has been treated by other authorities. Validation -- a tool to check the status of the authority: “Is case or statute still good law?” Has the case’s status changed since it was published? Reversed on appeal or overruled? Has the statute or regulation been amended, repealed, or found unconstitutional? Citator Functions Functions as a case finding tool to expand your research. Find cases on similar issues. Trace references to specific headnotes. Find references to secondary resources. Law Reviews/Journals and A.L.R. Annotations. Shepard’s Citations . . . Shepard’s is the most frequently used print citator used by the legal profession. Shepard’s lists every instance in which a legal authority has been cited by another legal authority. To access Shepard’s, you must have a CITATION to a legal authority. Learning to Shepardize is a rite of passage. Formats Shepard’s Citations are available in a variety of formats: Print Exclusively on LEXIS online database. WESTLAW citator service is called KEYCITE. Electronically on CD-ROM Online v. Print Advantages online: Includes unpublished decisions. Includes all law reviews/journals in the Lexis.com system. Statutory annotations are linked directly to cases. More comprehensive scope of citing references. Where are the print Shepard’s citators located at FCSL? Shepard’s Citations in print are located in the Reference Room on aisles 106 - 108. Be sure to pick the correct Shepard’s. They ALL look alike! Available Shepard’s Citations . . . Over 200 different units of Shepard’s Citations are published in print. Examples include: Shepard’s United States Citations for United States Supreme Court decisions. Shepard’s Federal Citations for U.S. District Court and Court of Appeals opinions. State cases may be Shepardized in state and/or regional citators. The exact coverage in each citator type is different. Types of Shepard’s Jurisdictional Shepard’s -- state, regional, or federal. Coverage varies. Consult appropriate divisions. State Reporters – shows citations of the official state reporter, selected leading law reviews, annotations, and federal court cases for that particular state. Regional Reporters – cites to all state cases in that component of the NRS. There are no citations to law reviews or statutes. More types of Shepard’s Topical Covers specific areas of law or type of tool. Examples include: Law reviews, C.F.R., and Restatements. Or by subject area -- administrative law, bankruptcy, labor, tax, intellectual property (copyrights, patents and trademarks). What makes Shepard’s SO Special? The print version uses a unique citation style. Definitely NOT in Bluebook format! 833 F. Supp. 1028 = 833FS1028 Editorial citations and treatment letters appear in a “secret code” to the uninitiated! Abbreviations and symbols signal how an authority has been treated or interpreted by other authorities. So what does Shepards look like?? Next slide is an example from Print Shepards for the Pacific Reporter 2d series. The Slide following that is an example form Print Shepards for Michigan Statutes. So what is the objective of this “secret code?” To convey as much information as possible in the least amount of space! Now, the fun part! Using Shepard’s in print . . . STEP ONE: Select the CORRECT citator. Federal citators -- Shepard’s Federal Citations and Shepard’s United States Citations. Jurisdictional citators -- State and regional citators. Regional citators do not include statute and other non-case legal authorities as cited references. Specialized citators -- Specialized Federal Practice Citators (labor, bankruptcy), Shepard’s Uniform Commercial Code Citations, among many others. STEP TWO: Check for the most current and complete edition. Check the most RECENTLY issued supplement and consult the information on the cover: “What Your Library Should Contain.” Each Shepards volume covers a specific period of time and they are NOT cumulative You MUST check all applicable bound volumes, softbound supplements, and updates listed under this section!! Step Two (continued) To completely Shepardize a case you may have to look in several or all of these: maroon bound volumes maroon bound supplements red paperback cumulative supplements gold annual or semi-annual supplements white advance sheets blue express issues. STEP THREE: Understand the Citator. Learn about its scope of coverage and unique features. Read the preface – it describes important features of that particular citator. Notice the “Case Analysis - Abbreviations” How To Use . . . Work through the example. Illustrative example. Practice, practice, practice! STEP FOUR: Find the citation in the citator 1. THE RIGHT DIVISION -- look for your reporter 2. VOLUME NUMBER -- located on the top of the page and in easy-to-find boxes. 3. CASE PAGE NUMBER scan for page number in bold, between dashes. 4. REPEAT STEPS A - C in each publication listed in “What Your Library Should Contain” section. Be METHODICAL!! STEP FIVE Interpreting the entries. See “Case Analysis – abbreviations” History of the cited case and citations to other authorities citing the case. Editorial analysis in letter-form abbreviations. Be especially alert for negative treatment codes • “o” for overruled • “r” for reversed. Often located in the inside covers. Note Headnotes -- raised superscripts preceding the citing case’s page number. Citing references are organized by jurisdiction and court. REMEMBER . . . All abbreviations are defined in the introductory material!! You do not have to memorize them, just know where to look!! Shepard’s for case law Summary Fairly mechanical process, not that difficult, once you have practice it, but EXTREMELY important. Tool used to validate your research and find precedential authorities. Part of the ethical obligation to provide competent representation. Remember, learning to Shepardize in print is a rite of passage for all law practitioners! Shepard’s for statutes. The process is the same! STEP ONE: select the right citator. STEP TWO: check the “What your Library Should Contain” in the current update. STEP THREE: Shepardize cite in all volumes. STEP FOUR: while consulting Table of Abbrevations, the preface, and “Statute Analysis - Abbreviations” STEP FIVE: interpret information found. Shepard’s for statutes . . . Read the introductory material!! And note the treatment and history signals are different than cases Consult the “Statute Analysis - Abbreviations” More help is available for Using Shepard’s Check out the Shepard’s tutorial on LexisNexis. You do not need a Lexis password to do the tutorial! Pick the one on Updating. Review the illustrative examples located in the print versions. ASK A LIBRARIAN for help!
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