Legal research is an expensive responsibility of legal practice. Even if only done periodically, time spent on the most popular research sites can quickly add up. For the prudent attorney, other research options may prove more reasonable and easy on the bank account. Here are a few to consider.
Casemaker is a free research tool, available to all members of bars associated with the Casemaker Consortium. According to the service’s website, “Dozens of state and local bar associations have partnered with Casemaker to offer basic legal research to their membership. In other states, Casemaker offers the same high quality legal research at a fraction of the cost of other providers.” It’s library includes federal court cases and a wide range of state decisions, dating back 100 years.
Fastcase also partners with state and local bars to provide free legal research to members. Its coverage includes federal cases and a collection of primary state laws. Regulations, court rules and constitutions are also available on the Fastcase platform. It also includes authority checks and dual column printing. You may have some problems finding every state law, as some are omitted from the database. Subscription fee options start at $695 per year.
A free service with no subscription requirements, this general research tool is actually quite useful as a legal research tool. Its fully searchable database provides access to federal and state case law, as well as statutes. You can also use it to research patents and a variety of scholarly articles. On the negative side, it doesn’t include federal cases over 80 years, and there is no shepardizing tool included.
As you seek to increase the profitability of your legal practice, it’s useful to look at the cost of your current research tools to determine whether more affordable options are available. And sense you are in the money saving mood, why not check out the cost saving value of TimeSolv legal time tracking and billing? With flexible time tracking and efficient billing, your firm can save money and valuable time. Click here for a free trial and discover all that TImeSolv does for your practice.
About Erika Winston:
Erika Winston is a Virginia based writer with a passion for all things legal. As a former domestic relations attorney, she understands the challenge of determining the best fee structure for your practice. Erika is a regular contributor to TimeSolv and a variety of other publications.