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Cost Effective Legal Research Power Point

Cost Effective Legal Research Power Point

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  • According to a recent survey conducted by Law Technology News, 73% of law firms surveyed charged clients for legal research, down from 97% in 2008. 81 law firms answered the survey, including 50 from firms with more than 500 attorneys
  • Use smaller databases Find/Get a Document
  • Items in folders are there forever, but cost after one year. History is there for one year, but costs the next day.
  • Forecite pulls cases cited frequently by other cases in your results, but the cases it pulls do not necessarily have all your search terms

Cost effectiveknfall2011 2 Cost effectiveknfall2011 2 Presentation Transcript

  • Cost Effective Lexis & Westlaw and Alternatives to Lexis & Westlaw Sue Altmeyer c 2011
  • Topics Covered
    • The Cost of Lexis & Westlaw
    • Frugal Lexis and Westlaw Use
    • WestlawNext Cost Effective Use
    • Low cost databases
    • Free Internet Sources
    • Library Sources (briefly)
  • Flat Rate Plans
    • Still care about cost effectiveness because:
    • client charged
    • Item maybe outside of plan
    • Greater Usage = Greater Cost for Flat Rate Plan next year
  • How to tell when out of plan
    • Lexis- items outside of plan not accessible. Another account to access off plan. Or, may have dollar signs.
    • Westlaw- Message saying outside of plan. Or, Directory – click My Databases. Or set preferences to indicate off plan with *
    • Figures are from a Local Law Firm, 2008
  • 2010 Westlaw Law Firm Costs File/Services Hourly (Per Minute) Transactional (Per Search) All Federal Cases $19.05 Ohio State and Federal Cases $23.08 Sixth Circuit Cases $8.60 All Ohio Cases $8.60 Get a Document/Find 14.00 (primary), $24.00 (secondary) Keycite $6.25
  • Computing Westlaw Costs
    • Florida Briefs Multibase Click for rate
    • Select rate = $26.42/min (see Westlaw 2010 Subscriber Agreement )
    • Click Subscriber for per search cost
    • Add communication charges - .22/min
    • Add print/download costs – .05 per line or $27.50 per document
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    • Do you remember any of the tips for cost effective research on Lexis and Westlaw from your before-class assignments?
  • BEFORE you search
    • Ask librarian/managing partner about price plan.
    • Use print or lower cost databases
    • Plan your search before you go online
    • Call the Reference Attorneys
  • Cost Effective Searching
    • Narrowest Source
    • I to check database contents
    • Broad Search, then Focus/Locate
    • Table of Contents
    • Book Browse on LEXIS (not Westlaw)
    • History (L) or Research Trail (W) – 24 hrs
    • Westlaw – search transactional or hourly?
  • Searching, Cont’d
    • Alerts
    • Search by Topic/Headnote (L); KeyNumber/ Keysearch (W)
    • Get a Document BY CITATION (L), Find (W)
    • Links Embedded in Documents
    • Shepard’s/Keycite instead of search
    • 50 state surveys
  • Cost Effective Printing
    • Westlaw decide per line or per document
    • Print from browser
    • Copy with Reference
    • Get and Print, Find and Print
  • Keycite/Shepards
    • Brief Check to Shepardize; Westcheck to Keycite
  • WestlawNext
    • Flat rate plan
    • When view a document, charged a Find if that document is off-plan (will get warning)
    • Save document in folder - access forever, costs after 1 yr. Document updates for one year for free.
    • History saved one year, but charges next day after 2 a.m.
  • WestlawNext - Cost Recovery
    • =charging back to client
    • $60 per search plus a find charge for items clicked on
    • PLUS a find charge for items clicked on (Transactional Mode) OR per minute charge (Hourly Mode)
    • Cost chart – Click on Tools tab, then Subscriber Pricing Guide (non-discounted rates)
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  • Cost Effective WestlawNext
    • Some SEARCHING hints are different than Classic Westlaw
    • PRINTING hints the same
    • Keycite hints same, with some additional..
  • Some additional Keycite hints
    • Case itself lists the most negative case
    • Whether billed for keycite in addition to find depends on your plan
    • Limit Citing References, use headnotes, depth of treatment
    • keycite or kc : If need keycite, not text of case
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  • Select a type of document to get filters, eg. cases
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  • Cost Effective WestlawNext
    • Preferences link – pick Hourly or Transactional. Begins charging when click on Document.
    • Broad initial search
    • Narrow using filters or search within results (as many as desired)
  • Cost Effective WestlawNext Searching - Transactional
    • Pull up (Click on) the least amount of documents needed
    • Show the most detail
    • Documents ranked by relevance
    • Use Folders & share (Free 1 yr and History (until 2 am following day)
  • Show Less or More Detail
  • More WestlawNext Searching hints
    • Use Table of Contents instead of Book Browse
    • Alerts
    • Use Find
    • Use Keycite for research instead of a search
  • Lexis Advance
    • For Solos - $175/month, $315 for two lawyer firm
    • A bargain – typically $3000 or more/
  • Reference Attorney Phone Nos.
    • 800 45 LEXIS
    • 1-800-REF-ATTY (733-2889) (Westlaw)
    • 1-800-850-9378 for law students (Westlaw)
  • Low Cost Databases
  • Stripped down versions of Lexis/WL
    • Casemaker –Free w/ free student OSBA membership
    • Fastcase – Free w/ Cleve bar membership
    • Lois Law – C-M no longer has, CLL has
    • Versus Law – Free to Law students
  • Stripped Down Versions of Lexis/WL
    • What does Lexis/Westlaw have these do not?
    • Editorial features – headnotes, annotations
    • Practice Books (except Loislaw)
    • Law Review articles
    • Better search mechanisms and coverage
  • Stripped Down Versions of Lexis and Westlaw
    • Casemaker – best coverage for Ohio, except Ohio Misc. (1999-) Odd search syntax
    • Fastcase – Natural Language, Visual Charts
    • Loislaw - Best terms and connectors, field searching. Treatises. Alert searches.
    • VersusLaw – Cheapest, worst coverage
  • Contents Unanno Statutes Cases w/o Headnotes Unanno Regs “ Shepard’s –Like Feature” Other Loislaw Yes Yes – Ohio unreported 1997- Yes Yes Treatises, Forms, Public Records (depends on plan) Casemaker Yes Yes – Ohio unreported 1981- Yes Yes Some Jurisdictions - Jury Instruc., Jury Verdicts, More
  • Contents Unanno Statutes Cases w/o Headnotes Unanno Regs “ Shepard’s –Like Feature” Fastcase Internet links for 8 states Fed App 1925-, Ohio 1950 -, Ohio unreported 2000-. Coverage Mostly Internet Links Yes Versuslaw See help, Content/ Features Fed if pay more, no state Ohio 1950 -. Ohio unreported 1995 -. Older Fed District More $ Fed if pay more, no State Yes
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  • Searching Boolean Natural Language Fields Search databases together Loislaw Yes - near2 No Yes Yes Casemaker Yes - w/n, w/sent, w/para No Yes Fed together, State together
  • Searching Boolean Natural Language Fields Search databases together Fastcase Yes - w/n Yes Date, cite look-up only Yes Versus Law Yes - w/n Yes default connector is ADJ 4 fields, see help For addtl fee
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  • Primary & Secondary – Specific Subjects
    • BNA
    • CCH Intelliconnect
    • RIA Checkpoint
    • See Electronic Resources page for links.
    • NOT low cost, but not charged back to clients
    • Have primary and secondary sources, current awareness
  • BNA Current Awareness
    • Articles, cases
    • May contain past 12 years
    • ex. U.S. Law Week/Supreme Court Today
  • BNA Libraries
    • Cases, statutes, regs
    • Practice books
    • ex. ABA/BNA Lawyers' Manual on Professional Conduct , Labor and Employment Law Library  , Tax and Accounting Resource Center - more
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  • CCH Intelliconnect
    • Both Primary and Secondary Sources
    • Topics Covered: Antitrust Banking Corporate Governance Health Care and Medicaid/Medicare Labor & Employment, Pensions Securities
  • CCH
    • Boolean searching, w/n etc.
    • Federated Searching
    • Indexes
    • Current awareness emails – Sign up Instructions
    • Known for their fifty state charts
    • Smart charts – create your own chart
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  • Benefits of Low Cost Databases Over Free Internet
    • Better Search Mechanisms
    • Coverage
    • May be more current
    • Trustworthiness
    • Aggregated Info – One stop shopping
  • What’s on the Free Web
    • All US Supreme Court Cases
    • Reported Federal Appellate from 1882
    • Some Unreported Fed App, Fed District
    • State cases: reported – 1950. unreported - early-mid nineties
  • What’s on the Free Web, cont’d
    • Statutes & Regulations- federal and states
    • Municipal Ordinances
    • Law Review Articles
    • Forms
    • Dockets, Briefs & Pleadings
    • LOTS more!
  • Start with a Good Internet Portal
    • From the Library Home Page – Legal Research on the Web
    • Public Records & People Finders
    • Cornell Legal Information Institute (LII)
    • FindLaw
    • Other Portals
  • Use LEGAL Search Engines
    • Cornell University Legal Research Engine
    • LexisWeb
    • FindLaw LawCrawler
    • Justia
  • Case law
    • Google Scholar – state reported 1950-, fed circuit/ district 1923-
    • Ohio Supreme Court
    • LexisOne – Last 10 yrs, Lexis searching
    • Legal Research on the Web - Cases
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  • Google Advanced Operators
    • AROUND –ex. constitution AROUND(5) "home rule“
    • ~ searches for synonyms and related words ex. ~constitutionality - searches for constitutional, unconstitutional, etc.
    • * placeholder for a word.  Ex. sexual * abuse picks up “sexual misconduct abuse”, “sexual child abuse”, etc.
  • Web Sites to Know
    • Thomas .gov – Federal Legislative History
    • FDSys - Fed’l Govt.
    • PACER  – Federal Court dockets
    • Some dockets have full text documents ex. Ohio – Montgomery & Summit Counties, federal
    • Martindale Hubbell Law Digest
  • Library Resources
    • C|M|LAW - Lexis Academic
    • Cleveland Public - Ohio Westlaw
    • Pro se Lexis - Justice Center
    • County Law Libraries – may charge fee to use computer. Lexis, Westlaw or both
  • Assignment
    • Use ELECTRONIC SOURCES
    • Do not use Lexis or Westlaw