Legal Citations – How to Find Court Decisions and Other Legal Material - Jail... When you make a legal argument, you should always back it up by citing the names of the cases you are referring to. Every decision in a case has an official “citation,” which is the case name, followed by a bunch of letters and numbers that tell you where you can find a copy of the decision. Case citation is a very picky and frustrating activity, but it is very important to making a legal argument. Before you worry about how to cite to a case, the first thing you need to deal with is finding a case. 1. Court Decisions Reported DecisionsCourt decisions are published in books called “Reporters” or “Reports.” Decisions of the U.S. U.S. How to Read a Case When a judge decides a case, he or she writes a description of the facts of that case, the law the judge used to get to his or her decision, and the reason they decided one way or the other.
Key Number Links – Directly under the summary, you may see numbered paragraphs with headings and little pictures of keys. Johnson v. “Johnson v. Roe v. Citing Cases. The Rule Bluebook Rule 10 covers how cases should be cited in legal documents. Table T.1 includes the official names and legal citation abbreviations for federal and state reporters, and federal and state statutory compilations. Jurisdiction Tables and Abbreviations: Table T.1 One of the keys to citing cases properly is knowing where to find the proper legal citation abbreviations. In the Bluebook, all abbreviations are listed in the tables, which begin on page 215. Table T.1 is the most important section of the Bluebook's tables.
The following chart summarizes Table T.1, including where to find reporter and reporter abbreviation information for all federal and state courts. Since you will use the information in Table T.1 often throughout your legal career, you should take the time to become familiar with its content. State Cases State cases can be cited in two ways: using a regional reporter, and using a state reporter. Citing a State Case in a Regional Reporter Beachy v. But rather U.S. Or. Case citation. A legal citation is a "...reference to a legal precedent or authority, such as a case, statute, or treatise, that either substantiates or contradicts a given position. " Where cases are published in paper format, the citation usually contains the following information: Report titleVolume numberPage numberYear of decision In some report series, for example in England and Australia, the volumes are not numbered independently of the year: thus the year and volume number (usually no greater than 4) are required to identify which book of the series has the case reported within its covers.
In citations of this type it is usual in these jurisdictions to apply square brackets "[year]" to the year (which may not be the year that the case was decided: for example, a case decided in December 2001 may have been reported in 2002). The Internet brought with it the opportunity for courts to publish their decisions on web sites. Most decisions of courts are not published in printed law reports. Where: Judicial Decisions | Law Library of Congress. Introduction The United States has parallel court systems, one at the federal level, and another at the state level. Both systems are divided into trial courts and appellate courts. Generally, trial courts determine the relevant facts of a dispute and apply law to these facts, while appellate courts review trial court decisions to ensure the law was applied correctly.
In the US legal system, judicial decisions create legal precedents that guide judges in deciding similar future cases. Decisions are published in serial print publications called “reporters,” and are also published electronically. Back to Top Citations Citations are used to refer to opinions and identify where they have been published in reporters. For example, the citation Stearns v. The rules governing the most widely used legal citation format are found in The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation (19th ed. 2010)(Call No.
Federal Court Decisions State Court Decisions Digests Databases and Internet Resources. Why is my court case on the Internet? NOTE WELL! We can only respond to copies of court cases on the resource.org servers. Those are the only computers we can control. If your court case is on a government web site or on another computer that is not part of resource.org, we cannot help you. This page is only applicable to the resource.org computers. Thank you. This policy describes why Public.Resource.Org, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, is putting court cases on the Internet and what you can do if you object to seeing your case show up on search engines such as Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft. Court Cases Are Public Records If a case is heard by the Supreme Court of the United States, no one would argue that the opinion should not be published and viewable by all.
In the United States, the decisions of the courts, from the Supreme Court on down to lowest municipal court, have always been available on high-priced commercial services such as West Law and Lexis Nexis. We Are All Hurt When the Law is Not Public. Not all that is public should be publicized. Adam Sherman, a partner in the Vorys Cincinnati office and a member of the litigation group, authored an article for Law360 titled “Not All That Is Public Should Be Publicized.” The full text of the article is included below. Until recently, public access for court decisions still required time, effort or expense.
Court decisions used to be filed away in musty courthouses. Some were printed in expensive, hardback volumes available only in law libraries. But now, it’s easier to find court decisions than ever before. Federal circuit court decisions are readily accessible through Internet search engines. While perhaps good in theory, this has actually become problematic and needs to stop. Although court decisions are public records, that doesn’t mean they should be publicized by the courts on search engines, such as Google. The Internet provides quick, easy access to a lot of data. Sometimes the harm goes beyond mere involvement in a lawsuit.