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When & How to Use Various Resources Online research best practices Research in the Real World 2010 May 18, 2010 1.

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Presentation on theme: "When & How to Use Various Resources Online research best practices Research in the Real World 2010 May 18, 2010 1."— Presentation transcript:

1 When & How to Use Various Resources Online research best practices Research in the Real World 2010 May 18,

2 Online research best practices Know what is available Know what resources are available to you. Get familiar with those resources. Dont discount print. Organize set of links to known resources. Remember, its the source that matters. 2 Keep a research log of all sources plus online research platforms you used.

3 Online research best practices Secondary Law Citators & other tools Public Records News Your draft Source types & tools 3 Focus on the Sources

4 Online research best practices Primary Law Secondary Law Citators & other tools Public Records NewsYour draft Source types & tools – focus on: secondary sources Legal treatises Cover specialized legal topics; provide explanation and analysis; include references to primary law authority (cases, codes, regulations) Legal Encyclopedias Cover a wide range of topics; examples: AmJur, CalJur, ALR, CJS Law Reviews Scholarly but can have practical application Other Current Awareness Specialized newsletters covering major litigation, legislative and regulatory developments. Continuing Legal Education Seminar materials and other publications Secondary Sources 4

5 Online research best practices Secondary Sources as an integral part of research When unfamiliar with an area of law. When looking for primary persuasive authority. When researching a case of first impression where little law is available – looking for commentary. When initial search of primary resources yields little or no authority or too much authority. 5

6 Online research best practices When given a case as a starting point Exercise Your firm is following the UMG v. Augusto case because of a similar case file they are handling. You have been asked to give a status report on this case as well as others that might impact the issue of whether a copyright holder has the right to control the further purchase and sale of a particular genuine authorized copy after they have already chosen to send it out into the stream of commerce You have a case name, but not a case citation. You have also been told that this case is receiving a lot of attention. 6

7 Online research best practices Where to start – when you have a case Emphasis on: Secondary Sources What specialized copyright or intellectual property materials and databases are available to you? 1.Because the case is new and receiving lots of attention, try a specialized newsletter first. For example: BNAs Patent Trademark & Copyright Journal (PTCJ) is a weekly publication designed to keep intellectual property attorneys informed on influential cases and other developments. 2.If citation found, use a citator like Shepards (Lexis) or Keycite (Westlaw) to discover additional secondary materials providing you with analysis and commentary. If no citation found, perform a case name search on Lexis or Westlaw, make a note of the citation, read the case and Shepardize/Keycite. 3.Get a closer look at this case via PACER – a public records database for federal court cases providing the case docket, case status and full-text filings. 4.Look for articles in other general news databases – expand search beyond traditional legal databases. 5.Use any other specialized resources, such as treatises on copyright law, available to you. Remember, the most appropriate and cost effective sources may not always be available to you on Lexis/Westlaw. Go beyond Lexis & Westlaw. Next, well take a look at examples for each source type. 7

8 Online research best practices Again, know your sources: for example, lets say your firm subscribes to BNA online products focusing on intellectual property – one of which is a weekly newsletter called BNAs Patent, Trademark & Copyright Journal. 8

9 Online research best practices Two articles are retrieved from the search; lets look at the most recent article: see next slide. 9

10 Online research best practices We have a citation! Next, lets use a citator like Shepards (Lexis) or Keycite (Westlaw). The article also reveals how this issue is evolving and how it appears to be in a state of uncertainty in the appellate courts. Finally, the article also provides similar cases you can explore further – which is part of your assignment. With this article you have accomplished three things (at least): (1) complete case citation (very useful); (2) more about the significance of this case; and (3) more about other cases dealing with similar issues. Excerpt from article retrieved: BNAs Patent Trademark & Copyright Law Journal 10

11 Online research best practices Primary Law Secondary Law Citators & other tools Public Records NewsYour draft Source types & tools – focus on: secondary sources Shepards & Keycite Reports providing: (1) direct history for your case, (2) citations for other cases citing your case, (3) briefs, (4) dockets and (5) secondary materials citing your case in an analysis or commentary. Citators 11 Other tools Automated analysis & reporting Used to generate profiles that analyze activity by judges, attorneys and expert witnesses – mostly for federal cases but state court information is also available. Some verdicts and settlement databases may fall in this category and can be used to determine the amount for damages for specific types of injuries. For business attorneys, tools might include knowledge management software (by Lexis/Westlaw) to retrieve contract clauses for different types of transactions.

12 Online research best practices Note: Westlaw has no subsequent history for this case – more on this later. 12 Click on citing references from Keycite display to view secondary materials.

13 Online research best practices secondary sources Citators, like Keycite and Shepards, also provide secondary sources citing your case. 13

14 Has the case been appealed? What happened to it? On an earlier slide, Westlaws Keycite seemed to indicate there was no subsequent history. Lets make sure by using a difference source type. Online research best practices Your research so far… Exercise status report You have been asked to give a status report on this case as well as others that might impact the issue of whether a copyright holder has the right to control the further purchase and sale of a particular genuine authorized copy after they have already chosen to send it out into the stream of commerce 14 Your firm is following the UMG v. Augusto case because of a similar case file they are handling. You know: (1) a little bit more about the case, (2) similar cases and, (3) from reading secondary materials, you know a little bit more about the legal issues involved But, what about the status of the Augusto case?

15 Online research best practices Primary Law Secondary Law Citators & other tools Public Records NewsYour draft Source types & tools – focus on: secondary sources Court records Include: dockets that list case start-to-finish activity, documents filed arranged chronologically, names of attorneys representing parties, judges name and most recently, full-text access to pleadings (complaint, answer, cross-complaint, motions, other documents) People Locators For example: used to locate addresses for service of process or other notifications. Real Property & Assets For example: used to locate addresses for service of process or other notifications. Also, to determine assets owned by litigants. Business & Corporation Records Can be used to located registered agent for service of process; determine active/inactive status of business. Public Records 15

16 Online research best practices Researching Case Status Federal cases: PACER - Public Access to Court Electronic Records Federal & State Courts (not all state courts): Courtlink (Lexis) CourtExpress (Westlaw) California: Ninth Circuit: 16 Next, we will use PACER for this example – see next slide. You may also find case status information in specialized secondary sources that are supplemented by weekly news reports or general news databases (if the case is being followed by the press or is receiving national attention).

17 Online research best practices About PACER 17 A listing of all parties and participants including judges, attorneys, and trustees. A compilation of case related information such as cause of action, nature of suit, and dollar demand.nature of suit A chronology of case events entered in the record. Appellate court opinions. Judgments or case status. Types of documents filed for certain cases. Imaged copies of documents. PACER is a service of the United States Judiciary. The PACER Service Center is run by the Administrative Office of the United States Courts. Source: Electronic access to case dockets, retrieve information such as: $.08 per page charge. The charge for any single document is capped at $2.40, the equivalent of 30 pages.

18 Online research best practices 18 For our example, well start with the Civil court type.

19 Online research best practices 19 Where did I find the case number? Keep research log!

20 Online research best practices 20 Remember our BNA PTCJ search earlier? The other article provided a case/docket number. There was another place with the case number? Do you know where?

21 Online research best practices 21 PACER docket: UMG v. Augusto

22 Online research best practices 22 The District court case docket provided the Appellate Court docket number. Lets take a look at the documents filed in the Appellate Case and see if we can decipher any further status.

23 Online research best practices 23 For your status report: Appealed to 9 th Circuit; oral argument set for: June 7 th. Hyperlinks are to full-text of briefs and other documents filed.

24 Online research best practices 24 If you are working for a firm this summer with access to PACER, keep in mind that PACER is transitioning to a new interface. The U.S. Party Case Index will now be called the PACER Case Locator:

25 Online research best practices Primary Law Secondary Law Citators & other tools Public Records NewsYour draft Source types & tools – focus on: secondary sources General News Comprehensive news databases often include well-known major newspapers (New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post) as well as smaller regional newspapers. If your issue is local, be sure to check regional news sources. Legal News Publications written for the legal profession; examples: American Lawyer, National Law Journal and Daily Journal (SF). Good for current events, major cases and any issues affecting the practice of law (also, job postings). Magazines When you need an article written for a wider audience, or if photos and illustrations are needed to illustrate a point. Wire Services When it is critical to know when information became public. Blogs News 25

26 Online research best practices 26 Example: News database types on LexisNexis

27 Online research best practices 27 Example: Lexis news database search result – includes Blog posts.

28 Online research best practices Primary Law Secondary Law Citators & other tools Public Records NewsYour draft Source types & tools – focus on: secondary sources Legal treatises specialized legal topics providing explanation and analysis and include references to primary law authority (cases, codes, regulations) Legal Encyclopedias Cover a wide range of topics; examples: AmJur, CalJur, ALR, CJS Legal Bar Journals & Magazines Intended audience are practicing attorneys Law Reviews Scholarly but can have practical application Other Current Awareness Specialized newsletters covering major litigation, legislative and regulatory developments. Continuing Legal Education Seminar materials and other publications Secondary Sources 28

29 Online research best practices 29 Remember the BNA PTCJ search earlier? The article also provided a U.S. Code citation. Again, keep a research log!

30 Online research best practices Are any other specialized online databases available? 30

31 Online research best practices 31 In the example above: CCH Intelliconnect platform Looking at the Table of Statutes in Goldstein on Copyright for commentary on 17 US 109(a)

32 Online research best practices 32 In the example above: CCH Intelliconnect platform Looking at: chapter on First Sale Doctrine from Goldstein on Copyright

33 Online research best practices 33 Secondary resources in action – from a brief filed in this case:

34 Online research best practices Many of you probably thought about using Google: 54,700 hits – how much time do you have? Ask yourself, is there a better way? Again, what sources are available to you in ALL FORMATS!!! ….might work, but may also take up a lot of your time. A web site by a professional group (i.e. bar association section on intellectual property law) or a well-known and highly regarded blog might be helpful but wont provide the in-depth analysis you will find in treatises and other secondary sources – whether in online format or print. Learn to use both well!!! On the road not taken…..and why. 34

35 35 How much does it cost to search the databases and what is the most cost effective way to search? Field/segment searching; limiting search results; search connectors and order of operators, nesting. What are the best sources to use; how to use them; how are the sources designed to maximize legal research Simple keyword searching; how to find databases; Googling Basic searching Effective use of sources Cost Concerns Advanced Searching This session focused on sources. Effective online research will involve a balancing of several skills: Thank you.


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