Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Pain, aka Legal Documents

I know what a pain it can for college students to find information legal cases! In fact, I was that unfortunate student on more than one occasion - trying to navigate the gov docs section of our library, attempting to find credible online sources for a particular case, or even just wanting to see a particular transcript from the Supreme Court. There is never an easy way to do this!

That is why this article, "Legal Technology - Get Your Free Case Law on the Web," caught my attention.

There are many useful links for a librarian who is guiding a student through their legal case research - I bookmarked more than one!

Of particular note...
1) AltLaw - an interesting project which I found to be particularly easy to use. You can tell it was created by a librarian, or at least someone very sensitive to the needs of researchers, because this site offers the most comprehensive searching tools that would be helpful to all levels of researchers.
2) PreCYdent - this is a great, new tool (still in beta) that has the cases, but also has a social networking feature. This is a great way for today's university students to share resources and may promote a loyalty.

Hopefully, as the digitization of these materials spreads, locating and using them will get easier... or is that just a hopelessly idealistic pipe dream?

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