Friday 19 March 2010

State case law availability in legal databases

3 Geeks and a Law Blog today published a post that discusses the availability of state case law in non-Wexis, lower-cost legal research databases Fastcase, Loislaw, Casemaker and Google Scholar. Law librarian Greg Lambert, who authored the post, reports that the low-cost legal research provider that has the most state case law coverage, based on years of coverage, is Casemaker. He came to this conclusion through research in which he:
  • Looked at coverage for all 50 states, plus the District of Columbia
  • Established the year that the each state published its first official state court decision (highest court)
  • Reviewed the scope of coverage for each research provider
  • Graphed who had the best pre-1950, pre-1920 and pre-1899 coverage
  • Graphed who had the most states where there was complete coverage of all decisions
  • Finally graphed the overall percentage of state case law decisions for all 50 states and the District of Columbia

You can read more and see the graphical representation of state caselaw coverage in Greg's blogpost.

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