As the nomination hearings for Judge Neil Gorsuch approach, ZiefBrief notes the appearance of couple of great new sources of solid, objective information about the nominee.
First, there's the 103-page Judge Neil M. Gorsuch: His Jurisprudence and Potential Impact on the Supreme Court, a new Congressional Research Service report that examines Judge Gorsuch's jurisprudence on a wide range of issues, including: the role of the judiciary; statutory interpretation; administrative law; capital punishment; civil liability; civil rights; criminal law and procedure; environmental law; federalism; freedom of religion; freedom of speech; international and foreign law; right to bear arms; separation of powers; substantive due process; and takings.
Then there's the Neil Gorsuch Project, a collaborative project of several libraries, spearheaded by the Univ. of Virginia Law Library. The Neil Gorsuch Project offers the full text of all of Judge Gorsuch's opinions, as well as citations to his other publications (with links, where possible), and videos of his speeches.
Bloomberg Law has launched a new page devoted to detailed reporting on the first 100 days of the Trump administration.
This page, President Trump: The First 100 Days, is the latest in a series of Special Features, and is accessible right from Bloomberg Law's home page — provided you have a Bloomberg Law account
In additions to general news on the administration, the First 100 Days page also has sections on: the Supreme Court; the Affordable Care Act; Energy & Environmental Policy; Immigration; Regulatory Reform; Tax Reform; and Tax Policy
The First 100 Days page also links to profiles of cabinet nominees and includes embedded Twitter feeds from the White House, and from the president's personal and official Twitter accounts.
Once the first 100 days are past, the page will likely move to Bloomberg Law's Special Feature Archive, where it will continue to be available.
LearnLeo is a new online research tool designed to make legal research and document drafting more efficient for legal writers. LearnLeo allows you to gather excerpts from any online resource (including fee databases like Westlaw and Lexis) and save, highlight, or annotate this content within customized research subjects with a single click.
Students can build and edit a brief or memo outline as they research -- if you want to change your outline, you can drag and drop your research subjects to restructure your outline.
LearnLeo also saves links to all of your sources to help ensure that you cite to sources accurately and completely (it doesn't supply perfect Bluebook citations for you, however). You can find out more about how LearnLeo works at its website.
The law library isn't able to pursue an institution-wide subscription to LearnLeo at this time. However, we wanted to inform law students that you can create a LearnLeo Research account, and your first project will be free. At the end of February, LearnLeo will begin to charge law student users who wish to continue to use the product a monthly subscriber fee of $4.99. However, if you start a project in February, you’ll be able to continue to use that project after February 28 without paying the monthly fee.
HeinOnline announced that it has placed its "how to" tutorials on YouTube. The videos cover the basics of searching and navigating HeinOnline, as well as how to get the most out of HeinOnline's U.S. Congressional Documents library.
CourtListener, the latest free-legal-research platform, has launched with an impressive line-up of features.
In addition to a searchable database of millions of state and federal opinions with a powerful search engine, CourtListener also boasts an archive of PACER federal court filings (via RECAP), judicial profiles, oral argument audio from state and federal courts, and a gallery of intriguing U.S. Supreme Court visualizations.
From time to time, we like to remind USF law students, faculty, and staff about our interlibrary loan services. If you are a current student or current member of our law faculty and staff and you locate a book or article that you need for research that isn't available at USF, law library staff can request copies of these materials for you from other libraries across the country. While loan periods for interlibrary loan (ILL) books are more restrictive (typically, a 3-week loan period is authorized by the lending library), this service allows you to obtain materials from academic libraries in other areas of the nation. Just remember that each USF library processes ILL requests separately. Law students, faculty, and staff must file ILL requests with the law library, and non-law USF library patrons must file ILL requests with Gleeson Library.
Lexis continues its streak of enhancements with yesterday's release of the Reason for Shepard's Signal feature. This feature shows you the cited document (and passage within that document) that most strongly influenced the Shepard's editors' choice of signal. By leading you to the citing document with the most impact, this feature can help you more quickly figure out the status of your case, and whether you can use it for the purpose you have in mind.
"Reason for Shepard's Signal" is currently available for cases decided after March 2003.
Here's a screen shot of the "Reason for Shepard's Signal" link as it appears on the first screen of a recent case:
And here's what you see when you click on the "Reason for Shepard's Signal" link for this case:
Bloomberg Law is a vital tool for many legal research projects, including docket research, company research, and finding good transactional sample documents. USF offers Bloomberg Law accounts to current USF Law faculty, students, and staff (due to licensing restrictions, we are not permitted to offer accounts campus-wide). If you'd like an introduction to Bloomberg Law, you can now participate in 30-minute webinars designed just for beginners. Topics covered include: an introduction to structuring searches, case law research, researching circuit splits, and docket research. This PDF shows the date, time, and topic for each webinar. Don't have a Bloomberg Law account yet?Contact the research desk, and we'll get you set up!