Casemaker Weekly – January 9th, 2019

by Alexa Drago on January 9, 2019

Welcome to our first post of the new year!

 

 

 

 

 

 

This week we discuss searching for cases by party and by citation.

We also discuss how to narrow results. Let’s get started!

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Searching for Cases with Citation
The most frequently used function of Casemaker for most users is searching by citation. From the home page, you can simply type your citation in. You do not have to worry about being too picky if you use the wrong spacing, punctuation, or capitalization; Casemaker will automatically correct that for you. You do however need to make sure you are using only the reporter citation and the proper abbreviation. Casemaker goes by the Blue Book citation guidelines if you have any questions regarding abbreviations. For example, with Kearns v. Ford Motor Co., 567 F.3d 1120 (9th Cir. 2009), all you would put in the search bar is 567 F.3d 1120. Be sure you select the correct jurisdiction, however – you will not be able to pull up a New Hampshire Superior Court case when searching in US Court of Appeals!
Sometimes a particular citation brings up more than one result, and there is a very good reason for this. The other case shares a page with the case you were searching for. For example, your case may end on page 104 and another case begins on the same page of the reporter. This means even if you are typing in a pin cite, you will still be able to locate the case you are looking for.

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Narrowing your Search
Are your results just too much? If you are finding too many documents, you can always narrow your search. Once you have submitted your query you can see the various document types that your results included in a list on the left side of the screen. Click on the category you prefer to get all the results in that document category. Once your results load, you will notice a new menu will appear on the left side of the screen. This menu offers you a variety of ways to further narrow your search. For example, you can narrow by state, court, date, and keyword. Casemaker will automatically filter your results after you click the checkbox next to your choice. Take note, in some cases, you may have to click the Show All link to see all the possible options.

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Searching by Party
Searching by party works best if the party or parties in question have a less than common name. Obviously, searching for the party name of Smith is going to yield a large number of results compared to other less common names.
To search by party simply type the name of the party in the search bar and select the circle (often called a radio button) under the search bar labeled party. This will pull up all cases where that name is mentioned as a party in the case.

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That is all for this week! We will back with more tips and tricks next week. Thanks again for making Casemaker a Valued Member Benefit. We appreciate you!

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