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Posts Tagged ‘legaltechnology’

Do you need A/V Equipment for your trial?

Posted by Chi Song on April 15, 2016

The Circuit Court’s Information Services Department is responsible for the court’s evidence presentation equipment, which is available on a first-come, first-served basis. To reserve the equipment, you can fill out an online form (available here) or call the Information Services Department at (410) 222-1484. If you are unfamiliar with the evidence presentation equipment and would like training on the equipment, contact the Information Services Department.

Are you interested in learning more about different programs and technologies available to attorneys for evidence presentation? If so, check out these articles.

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Tech Troubles?

Posted by Chi Song on March 14, 2016

If you are having tech troubles or you’re not sure if your firm’s technology is up to snuff, check out these articles.

Also, the ABA TECHSHOW, a conference and tech expo for lawyers, legal professionals and technology, is this week. You can learn more about the TECHSHOW, including CLE programming and education here.

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Online Databases in the Limelight – Bloomberg BNA*

Posted by Chi Song on December 21, 2015

Online databases can be invaluable, time-saving  tools to any legal researcher as they provide organized access to a wide array of legal resources as well as sophisticated search tools.  Many online databases, including fee-based databases, are available at the Law Library, free of charge, to library patrons.  This month, the blog will feature six of the online databases available at the Law Library.

The Law Library provides library patrons with free access to the Bloomberg BNA (Bureau of National Affairs) legal database.  While there is a great deal of overlap between the resources available on Bloomberg BNA and WestlawNext and LexisNexis, which we highlighted earlier this month, Bloomberg BNA materials are only available on Bloomberg BNA.  These BNA materials include the following.

  • United States Law Week provides searchable access to Supreme Court opinions, Supreme Court Practice and Federal Appellate Practice.
  • Family Law Reporter provides a weekly roundup of family law developments and trends.
  • Criminal Law Reporter provides an overview of trends, development and issues in criminal law.
  • Lawyer’s Manual on Professional Conduct provides news and guidance regarding attorneys’ ethics and professional conduct.
  • “Slices” of Labor and Employment Law: The Americans with Disabilities Act Manual, which provides news and guidance related to ADA issues, developments, and state law compliance, and the Employment Discrimination Report, which covers developments in the procedural and substantive aspects of employment discrimination law, are the two resources the library has available through this database.

Can I access Bloomberg BNA at the Library? Yes! The Law Library offers FREE, in-person access to Bloomberg BNA.

How to use Bloomberg BNA in the Library? You can access Bloomberg BNA from any of the public access computers available at the Law Library.

What to do if you need help with Bloomberg BNA? Please ask for help at the Law Library’s service desk. We can provide technical and research assistance.

Can I access the Law Library’s Bloomberg BNA subscription from home? No. The Law Library’s current subscription permits in-person use at the library only.

For more information about understanding legal research, including the difference between primary and secondary legal resources, check out these research guides.

*This blog post is an update of a blog post previously published on December 30, 2014.

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Online Databases in the Limelight – HeinOnline*

Posted by Chi Song on December 17, 2015

Online databases can be invaluable, time-saving  tools to any legal researcher as they provide organized access to a wide array of legal resources as well as sophisticated search tools.  Many online databases, including fee-based databases, are available at the Law Library, free of charge, to library patrons.  This month, the blog will feature six of the online databases available at the Law Library.

Do you want what’s on the computer screen to match what was printed? Are you interested in accessing historical articles? If so, then HeinOnline may be the online database service for you! Launched in 2000, HeinOnline is the largest, image-based legal research database with full-text and page images of law review articles, treatises and primary sources of law.  HeinOnline users can search for specific resources or browse one of the database’s many collections.  For example, you can browse the Law Journal Library collection and see a listing of a specific Law Review’s articles, organized chronologically. Or, if you are interested in railroad case law from the 1800s, you can search HeinOnline’s Early American Case Law collection.

In addition, the Law Library’s subscription now includes the ABA Law LIbrary Collection Periodicals! Through this database, library users have digital access to 98 ABA titles, including ABA Journal, ABA Journal of Labor & Employment Law, Family Law Litigation, Mass Torts Litigants, Products Liability, and Trial Practice. A complete list of publications is available here.

Why use HeinOnline? Can’t I access the same information through LexisNexis or WestlawNext? Yes, there is overlap between the resources available on HeinOnline and the resources available on the WestlawNext and Lexis.  However, there are two big reasons why you may prefer to use HeinOnline over WestlawNext and LexisNexis.  First, HeinOnline is an image-based database. This means that you can see page images of documents, including graphics, which match the print versions of the resources.  Second, HeinOnline has a greater focus on retrospective historical coverage, meaning that you can find older documents that may be unavailable in the other databases.  

Can I access HeinOnline at the Library? Yes! The Law Library offers FREE, in-person access to HeinOnline.

How to use HeinOnline in the Library? You can access HeinOnline from any of the public access computers available at the Law Library.

What to do if you need help with HeinOnline? Please ask for help at the Law Library’s service desk. We can provide technical and research assistance.

Can I access the Law Library’s HeinOnline subscription from home? No. The Law Library’s current subscription permits in-person use in the courthouse only.

For more information about understanding legal research, including the difference between primary and secondary legal resources, check out these research guides.

*This blog post is an update of a blog post previously published on December 9, 2014.

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Online Databases in the Limelight – LexisNexis*

Posted by Chi Song on December 14, 2015

IMG_1894

Here is one of the computers in the Law Library with access to LexisNexis.

Online databases can be invaluable, time-saving  tools to any legal researcher as they provide organized access to a wide array of legal resources as well as sophisticated search tools.  Many online databases, including fee-based databases, are available at the Law Library, free of charge, to library patrons.  This month, the blog will feature six of the online databases available at the Law Library.

Lexis is one of the biggest players in the world of legal publishing and online legal research.  Lexis offers LexisNexis, a platform for searchable databases with access to a wide array of primary resources, such as federal and state statutes, federal and state regulations and case law, as well as secondary resources, such as encyclopedias, treatises, journal articles and form books.*  

There is a myriad of tools, resources and services available through Lexis.  Some of the most popular secondary Maryland resources available through our LexisNexis subscription are Pleading Causes of Action in Maryland  and MICPEL’s Marital Settlement Agreement Form. In addition, LexisNexis provides Shepard’s Case Citations, which identifies all published cases and other sources that cite (e.g., refer to) the case being reviewed by the legal researcher and provides additional information, such as the reason why the later case cited the case at hand.  This is important information to have as later cases can affect the value of the case at hand or later cases may better address the matter being researched.  In addition, the Law Library’s subscription includes document delivery services (e.g., email, print, PDF downloads, RTF downloads) so that users can access certain resources after the online session has concluded.

Can I access LexisNexis at the Library? Yes! The Law Library offers FREE, in-person access to LexisNexis. As access to LexisNexis can be cost-prohibitive to attorneys and self-represented litigants, the Law Library provides free access to meet its users’ legal research needs.

How to use LexisNexis in the Library? There are three computers designated for public LexisNexis access in the law library. Each computer has a small sign indicating the availability of LexisNexis. You do not need log-in information — simply double-click on the LexisNexis icon on the computer’s desktop.

What to do if you need help with LexisNexis? Please ask for help at the Law Library’s service desk. We can provide technical assistance (e.g.,  how to get started, how to use and search the database) as well as research assistance (e.g.,  how best to formulate your search, which resources to target for more refined searches).

Can I access the Law Library’s LexisNexis subscription from home? No. The Law Library’s current subscription permits in-person use at the library only.

*This blog post is an update of a blog post previously published on December 2, 2014.

**For more information about understanding legal research, including the difference between primary and secondary legal resources, check out these research guides.

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Online Databases in the Limelight – WestlawNext*

Posted by Chi Song on December 11, 2015

IMG_1889

Here’s a snapshot of one of the computers in our computer room with WestlawNext access.

Online databases can be invaluable, time-saving  tools to any legal researcher as they provide organized access to a wide array of legal resources as well as sophisticated search tools.  Many online databases, including fee-based databases, are available at the Law Library, free of charge, to library patrons.  This month, the blog will feature six of the online databases available at the Law Library.

Thomson Reuters is one of the biggest players in the world of legal publishing and online legal research and is the publisher of WestlawNext, a platform for searchable databases with access to a wide array of primary resources, such as federal and state statutes, federal and state regulations and case law, as well as secondary resources, such as encyclopedias, treatises, journal articles and form books.**

There is a myriad of tools, resources and services available through both WestlawNext.  One of the most popular services provided through WestlawNext is KeyCite, which is an online case citator service. KeyCite identifies all published cases and other sources that cite (e.g., refer to) the case being reviewed by the legal researcher and provide additional information, such as the reason why the later case cited the case at hand.  This is important information to have as later cases can affect the value of the case at hand or later cases may better address the matter being researched.  In addition, document delivery services (e.g., email, print, PDF downloads, RTF downloads) are available through the Law Library’s WestlawNext subscription. This means that users can access certain resources after the online session has concluded.

Can I access WestlawNext at the Library? Yes! The Law Library offers FREE, in-person access to WestlawNext. As access to WestlawNext can be cost-prohibitive to attorneys and self-represented litigants, the Law Library provides free access to meet its users’ legal research needs.

How to use WestlawNext in the Library? There are two computers designated for public WestlawNext access in the law library. Each computer has a small sign indicating the availability of WestlawNext. You do not need log-in information — simply double-click on the WestlawNext icon on the computer’s desktop.

What to do if you need help with WestlawNext? Please ask for help at the Law Library’s service desk. We can provide technical assistance (e.g.,  how to get started, how to use and search the database) as well as research assistance (e.g.,  how best to formulate your search, which resources to target for more refined searches).

Can I access the Law Library’s WestlawNext subscription from home? No. The Law Library’s current subscription permits in-person use at the library only.

*This blog post is an update of a blog post previously published on December 2, 2014.

**For more information about understanding legal research, including the difference between primary and secondary legal resources, check out these research guides.

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Farewell, Westlaw Classic

Posted by Chi Song on August 17, 2015

Westlaw Classic is coming to an end, and all Westlaw users will be migrated to WestlawNext. At the Law Library, the sunset date is September 10, 2015. Starting on that date, anyone who attempts to access Westlaw Classic at the Law Library or the Circuit Courthouse will be automatically redirected to WestlawNext at http://next.westlaw.com.

If you are new to WestlawNext, there are self-paced training options available online. These self-paced training programs include general guides that provide an overview of WestlawNext, searching on WestlawNext and browsing on WestlawNext. Advanced, targeted trainings, such as form finder training, are also available. In addition, the Law Library is available to assist you with your online WestlawNext research.
If you want to learn more about WestlawNext or online legal databases, check out our blog posts here.

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Legal Research in the Blogosphere – In Custodia Legis

Posted by Chi Song on June 22, 2015

Legal research can be challenging, even for experienced attorneys; however, there are many resources available to assist both attorneys and non-attorneys with their legal research needs.  The Legal Research in the Blogosphere series will share blog posts and online sites that legal researchers may find useful.

In Custodia Legis (“in the custody of the law”) is the blog of the Law Librarians of Congress. The blog’s posts cover a wide array of U.S. and foreign legal topics, including legal trends, developments and issues. In addition, the blog is a great resource to learn more about Congress.gov, which is the official federal website for U.S. federal legislative information. Below, please find a sampling of posts that caught our attention.

Check out the blog at http://blogs.loc.gov/law/!

 

 

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Innovation

Posted by Chi Song on May 28, 2015

There have been a lot of recent articles about innovation in the legal field and legal profession. Innovation topics include embracing the newest technologies available to assist attorneys and non-attorneys through the legal process to innovations in the practice of law itself. Check out these articles, blogs, blog posts, and websites and let us know your thoughts!

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Looking for information about your case?

Posted by Chi Song on March 13, 2015

The Maryland Judiciary Case Search website provides the public with online access to the Maryland Judiciary’s case records. Available information includes party names, city and state, case number, date of brith, trial date, charge and case disposition for District Court traffic, criminal and civil case records as well as Circuit Court criminal and civil case records. Maryland Rules 16-1001 through 16-1011 govern the public’s access to these records.

Here are some frequently asked questions we receive at the Law Library regarding Case Search.

  1. Can I access case search from home? Yes! The website address is http://casesearch.courts.state.md.us/inquiry/inquiry-index.jsp. You can also access links to Case Search from the Circuit Court’s website (www.circuitcourt.org) or the Maryland Courts website (www.mdcourts.gov).
  2. Can I access Case Search at the courthouse? Yes! The Law Library has public access computers that you can use to access Case Search.
  3. Is this official information? No, Case Search does not provide the official case record. It is simply a brief summary of the case record.
  4. What if want additional case information or the official case record? You will need to ask the court either in person at the courthouse or in writing. The clerk’s office does not accept telephone requests.
  5. I need help understanding what the abbreviations mean. You can find information about event codes and descriptions here. Criminal event codes and descriptions are available here. Traffic event codes and descriptions are available here. Civil event codes and descriptions are available here.
  6. Why can’t I find my case information? Not all case records will be made available on Case Search. For example, certain cases are protected by the Maryland Rules, such as juvenile cases, adoptions and sealed cases. In addition, landlord/tenant and marriage license records are not available on Case Search. There are also differences in how far back in history the case records will go. For the District Court, criminal case records accessible via Case Search date back to late 1991, and civil case records date back to 1989. For the Circuit Court, it will vary by courthouse. A list of specific date ranges is available here.
  7. Where can I search for Circuit Court Judgments and Liens? Once you have accepted the terms and conditions for Case Search, click on the “Search for Circuit Court Judgments and Liens”  link at the top of the page. Note that federal and state liens may not always be available.
  8. Where can I find information about an estate? Check out Estate Search, which is available at http://registers.maryland.gov/main/search1.html.
  9. Where can I find land records or copies of deeds? Check out MdLandRec.net. You will need to register to use this site, and there may be a time delay due to this registration process.

If you have additional questions about Case Search, check out the FAQ page available at http://mdcourts.gov/casesearch2/faq.html.

 

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