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FINDING DOCKETS AND CASE FILINGS Legal Research Refresher Lindsay Steussy

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Presentation on theme: "FINDING DOCKETS AND CASE FILINGS Legal Research Refresher Lindsay Steussy"— Presentation transcript:

1 FINDING DOCKETS AND CASE FILINGS Legal Research Refresher Lindsay Steussy

2 Dockets What is a Docket? Contains information about a trial or case: Judge, Parties, & Attorneys Documents: motions, testimony transcripts, jury instructions and worksheets, judge rulings, expert witness names, etc. Tracks case timeline and actions Why Research Dockets? Tracking cases you are participating in or are interested in Vetting clients and conducting due diligence Finding sample documents Researching opposing counsel, opposing parties, & expert witnesses Finding background on judges Current awareness and client development

3 Docket Terminology Docket Number – assigned by the court to each newly filed case Docket Sheet / Register of Actions – chronological list of actions and papers filed for each Docket Item Number – given to each paper Filing Date Date of Entry – date court clerk added to sheet Federal Docket Number Long version - 3:05cv07953 ABC(XYZ) 3 – filing location/courthouse ABC – judge XYZ – magistrate judge

4 Where to Find Docket Information Free Online Sources U.S. Supreme Court - ocket/docket.aspx ocket/docket.aspx RECAP The Law - Justia - Some State Court websites Paid Online Sources PACER - Charges $.10/page Bloomberg Law – PACER access included for free, substantial state coverage WestlawNext - cases with opinions only, but may have filings and sheets Lexis Advance – Courtlink docket search not available to students

5 Bloomberg Law Search Dockets Breaking Complaints - recently filed cases Docket Coverage – access Docket Tracking – follow cases in progress Docket Requests Docket Analytics – find cases by specific company or person

6 Search Dockets Choose Courts by either entering name or using Browse menu Keywords: may use Boolean searching and operators Docket number is the easiest search option Federal Courts have extra search options: Ticker: Stock ticker Nature of Suit: type, such as antitrust or civil rights Type: Civil or Criminal

7 Search Results Keyword search Filter by Circuit, State, Court Limit by date Create Search Alert

8 Understanding the Docket Case Name Docket Number Filing Date Parties and Attorneys Track Docket

9 Understanding the Docket Shown in chronological order Entry #s in blue can be downloaded Red must be requested from PACER (free for law students) Type of document is in CAPS Requested documents are found under Docket Requests and emailed

10 Docket Analytics

11 WestlawNext Dockets page allows searching across court, jurisdiction, topic – only cases with opinions Coverage varies by jurisdiction May only have docket sheet, not documents Can also see Filings attached to a case - typically briefs, but may include motions, orders, filings, and pleadings for some courts

12 State Court Dockets in Bloomberg Law Varies by state and court Fully Electronic – Docket and filings available Docket-Only – no filings All Paper – little/no online access Search using Docket Search and select jurisdiction

13 State Court Dockets Online Google search dockets / court filings / court records Philadelphia – Case number Person/Organization Case Filing Date Pennsylvania Docket Number Person/Organization OTN – Offense Tracking Number SID – Student Identification Number

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