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Legal Research Secondary Sources American Law Reports (ALRs) & Restatements.

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Presentation on theme: "Legal Research Secondary Sources American Law Reports (ALRs) & Restatements."— Presentation transcript:

1 Legal Research Secondary Sources American Law Reports (ALRs) & Restatements

2 ALR’s & Restatements 1.Today, topic turns back to secondary sources 2.Both ALR’s & Restatements are secondary sources related to common law/case law research

3 ALR History 1.Originally competitor to West’s National Reporter System 2.First Published in 1919 3.Printed only selected “leading cases” 4.Added Annotations a.It is the annotations that are useful today

4 ALRs: What Are They? 1.Annotated Cases a.not comprehensive b.cases used as “jumping-off point” for annotations 2.Annotations are like an article a.survey of a legal issue b.thoroughly researched c.treatment across jurisdictions d.many case citations

5 When to Use ALRs? 1.Find a survey of a legal issue a.Across jurisdictions b.Differing fact patterns 2.Identify cases on your legal issue 3.ALRs are generally NOT the best secondary sources to cite.

6 ALR Publication Patterns 1.A.L.R. 1 st – 3 rd State & Federal a.1919 to 1969 2.A.L.R. 3 rd – 5 th State a.1969 to date 3.A.L.R. Federal a.1969 to date 4.Most contemporary research will be done in ALR3d –5 th and ALR Federal

7 A 19 year old college student at the University of Texas in El Paso crossed the American/Mexican border one weekend. After visiting a few bars, he re-entered Texas the following Monday. His car was searched at the border and two Mexican nationals were found hiding in the trunk. In spite of loudly claiming total ignorance of their presence, he was arrested and charged with a Federal offense. He has appeared in your office and is seeking legal advice. Hypothetical

8 Finding ALR Annotations 1.ALR Indexes a.Quick Index (one volume) b.Multi-volume 2.ALR Digests 3.Online a.Lexis & Westlaw 4.Citators (Shepard’s & KeyCite)

9 ALR Index 1.Covers multiple ALR series 2.Includes tables 3.Index is in multiple volumes

10 ALR Index 1.Subject Index: Aliens

11 Using ALR Annotations 1.Components of an ALR Article a.First page of annotation with prefatory paragraph b.Table of contents c.Total Client Service Library references d.Annotation Index e.Jurisdictional table of cited statutes & cases f.Text of an annotation

12 ALR Annotation 1.Read prefatory paragraph to learn the scope of the annotation and get an overview of the topic. 2.Ask: this topic relevant to my research? b.Is there a better annotation on my topic?

13 Annotation Table of Contents & Article Outline 1.Browse Article Outline to find pertinent sections of the annotation.

14 Article Outline (continued)

15 Total Client Services Library References 1.References to ALR Resources a.Other annotations b.ALR Digest & Index 2.References to other primary and secondary sources

16 Annotation Index

17 Statutory Text & Table of Cases

18 Text of Annotation 1.Text of the Annotation a.Cases from your jurisdiction b.Patterns in case law from other jurisdictions c.Cases with fact patterns similar to your client’s

19 Updating ALRs 1.Any additional cases? 2.Superseding Annotations a.Sometimes only partly superseded 3.Supplementing Annotations a.Mainly used in A.L.R. & A.L.R.2d b.Need to read both, supplement & original

20 Updating ALRs 1.ALR 1 st a.ALR Bluebook of Supplemental Decisions b.Annotation History Table (in Tables vol. of the Index) 2.ALR 2 nd a.ALR Later Case Service 3.ALR 3 rd -5 th and Federal a.Annual Pocket parts b.Check for a more recent annotation i.Pocket part ii.Annotation History Table (in Tables vol. of the Index) c.Call Lastest Case Service “hot line” i.Phone # on front cover of recent pocket parts

21 ALRs Where to find them in the Library 1.ALRs a.Second Floor b.KF 132… 2.ALR Indexes a.Quick Index (one volume) i.Reserve KF 132.A55 Index June 2007 A-Z b.Multi-volume i.Second Floor, LC Collection KF132.A54 Index

22 ALRs on Westlaw 1.Search Database named: ALR 2.Search narrower ALR databases with content limited by subject 3.Will find cites to ALRs in “Results Plus” 4.Will find Cites to ALRs in KeyCite results.




26 Note the access point – Index. No other access points (i.e., table of contents)

27 Only Terms & Connectors searching here. No other access points (i.e., no subject index, table of contents)

28 A.L.R. Digest. I have never used it in paper and find the online version cumbersome.

29 Scroll down to see internal finding aids

30 Note: Although you do not have the same external finding aids online that you have in print (e.g., ALR Quick Index, ALR Index), you still have the same internal finding aids online (e.g., Article Outline, Table of Cases)

31 ALRs on LexisNexis 1.LexisNexis Source Legal > Secondary Legal > Jurisprudence & ALR > American Law Reports 2.Will find cites to ALRs in “Practitioners Toolbox” 3.Will find Cites to ALRs in Shepard’s results.

32 LexisNexis Source 1.NOTE: ALRs are a West published source and at times they did not provide updates to LexisNexis. Availability has varied. 2.Click on the information icon to check coverage, frequency of updating, and contents. 3.CONTENT-SUMMARY: a.The ALR database contains the full text of the annotations included in the Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Federal and Federal Second Series of the American Law Reports (ALR), all published by West, a Thomson Reuters business.


34 Only Terms & Connectors searching here. No other access points (i.e., no subject index, table of contents)

35 Watch for superseding or supplementing annotations

36 West Publishes ALRs… 1.NOTICE: This annotation has been superseded by the annotation(s) in 5 A.L.R. Fed. 2d 243 and 162 A.L.R. Fed. 1. Always consult the superseding or supplementing annotation(s) for later cases.5 A.L.R. Fed. 2d 243162 A.L.R. Fed. 1. 2.You need 162 A.L.R. Fed. 1 and 5 A.L.R. Fed.2d 243 working together to totally update the completely superseded 55 A.L.R. Fed 604. Gotta look at both.

37 Note: Although you do not have the same external finding aids online that you have in print (e.g., ALR Quick Index, ALR Index), you still have the same internal finding aids online (e.g., Jurisdictional Tables, Article Index, Article Outline)

38 Other Annotations in the ALR source file on LexisNexis 1.US Supreme Court Lawyers' Edition 2d annotations are published by LexisNexis. 2.The ALR source file contains the full text of these Lawyers’ Edition 2d articles. They analyze topics covered by US Supreme Court decisions.

39 Restatements History 1.American Law Institute a.Founded 1923 b.Objective: summarize & define (i.e. “restate”) major legal doctrines

40 What Are Restatements? 1.Codification of the Common Law a.Majority view b.Emerging trends c.What the rule should be 2.Created through collaborative process a.Eminent scholars in the field, many drafts, review by all ALI members 3.Special Status of Restatements a.Useful as persuasive authority

41 When to use Restatements 1.Well organized discussion of the law a.Rules b.Explanations c.Examples 2.When primary authority is adverse, can use to suggest what the law should be 3.Probably the most persuasive of persuasive authority

42 Restatements Publication Patterns 1.Note Special items a.Series = year of adoption, not number of times a restatement on a topic has been promulgated b.New restatement on the same topic as an existing one does not supercede the older version

43 Restatement Publication Patterns SUBJECTSERIES & DATES OF ADOPTION Agency1 st (1933) 2d (1957) Conflict of Laws1 st (1934) 2d (1969, 1988) Contracts1 st (1932) 2d (1979) Foreign Relations2d (1962, 1964, 1965) 3d (1986) Judgments1 st (1942) 2d (1980) Property Landlord & Tenant Donative Transfers Mortgages 1 st (1936, 1940, 1944) 2d (1976) 2d (1981, 1984, 1987, 1990) 3d (1996) Restitution1 st (1936) SUBJECTSERIES & DATES OF ADOPTION Security1 st (1941) Suretyship & Guaranty3d (1995) Torts Products Liability 1 st (1934, 1938, 1939) 2d (1963, 1964, 1976, 1977) 3d (1997) Trusts Prudent Investor Rule 1 st (1935) 2d (1957) 3d (1990) Unfair Competition3d (1993)

44 Finding Restatements 1.Is there a Restatement on your topic? a.Select appropriate subject & series 2.Which Series? (from Kunz p. 98) a.Generally, want to begin with the newest series b.if there is an older series, should you research the old and new? i.If your jurisdiction’s court has adopted the newer series, then probably don’t need to research the older series ii.Search older series if –Unclear about the status of the newer series rule in your jurisdiction –If the newer rule varies from the older rule –The newer rule appears to be a minority rule 3.Table of Contents 4.Index a.First Series has one volume comprehensive index b.All other series, search the index for that particular restatement

45 Restatements Hypothetical: Clark Leman, 5’ 6”, and Victor Barnes, 6’ 3”, had a bit of a scuffle in a bar one night. Victor Barnes was stabbed and blames Clark Leman. The authorities blamed him as well. They charged him with attempted murder. Victor Barnes, obviously a vengeful sort, has also filed a civil suit against Clark seeking restitution for pain and suffering. You represent Clark Leman. He wishes to claim self defense in the civil suit. Can he?

46 Restatement of Torts 2d Index 1.Search the subject index 2.Self Defense a.Force i.Use of force threatening death or serious bodily harm.

47 Restatement of Torts Table of Contents 1.Scan the table of contents to see if there is any relevant material

48 Using Restatements 1.Restatement Rule 2.Comments 3.Illustration 4.Reporter’s Notes 5.Case Summaries a.Appendicies OR b.Pocket part of the main Restatement volume

49 Restatement: Rules & Comments

50 Restatement Illustrations 1.Part of the comments

51 Restatement Reporters Notes 1.The rule represents a choice between conflicting positions and if so, whether the rule reflects the majority or minority position 2.Cite to the parallel sections in previous series 3.References to primary and secondary authorities 4.Reporters' Notes document and discuss the sources for the black letter and Comments and provide a convenient basis for further research.

52 Restatement Case Summaries 1.In Appendix Volumes 2.Appendix Volumes not cumulative 3.Case Summaries a.Holding and citation of the citing case b.Short commentary telling which portion of the Restatement was involved and how it was treated by the court c.Treatment of the Restatement by the court i.Adoption ii.Discussion or disagreement with the rule.

53 Updating Restatements 1.Pocket Parts to Restatement & Appendix volumes 2.Interim Case Citations a.Interim Case Citations is a pamphlet that covers all of the restatement topics.

54 Restatements on Westlaw 1.Database: Restatements of the Law (REST) a.Combined file with all restatements & drafts 2.Database: Restatement of the Law-Torts (REST-Tort) a.Includes all version of the Restatement of Torts 3.See Westlaw Directory for additional Restatement database names


56 Once you select a Restatement Database, conduct a Terms & Connectors search and/or browse the Table of Contents

57 Restatement on Lexis 1.Legal > Secondary Legal > Restatements of the Law a.Combined Source file with all Restatement Topics OR b.Restatement Source files by topic








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