Lawyers are an integral part of the team of private law firms, government agencies and the justice system. These professionals help lawyers and other lawyers collect and analyze the information needed to complete the case. If you are interested in a career as a lawyer, there are several factors to consider. In this article, we will explore what a law researcher is, what they do, how to become a law researcher, and what your earning potential can be as a law researcher. When it comes to online search, some people start with free legal search options, including search engines like Google or Bing. However, if you want to make sure your legal research is complete, you should use an online search service designed specifically for law, like Westlaw. Online solutions like Westlaw not only have all the legal sources you need, but also include artificial intelligence (AI) and other tools that can help you do your legal research quickly. How can you check if you are using the “right” law? Use a citator. Citators allows you to verify the authority of a case by obtaining a cataloged list of cases, laws, and legal sources, as well as a history and precedent for those sources, so you can then check if they have not been rescinded, challenged, or rendered irrelevant. What does it take to become a legal research professional? You need to start with a strategy and know how to use legal research tools to your advantage. Now that you`ve gathered the facts and know your legal problem, the next step is to know what to pay attention to.
Finally, you need a law to support your legal reasoning, whether you`re advising a client or writing an internal memo, letter, or other legal document. The easiest way to find out if something is still a good law is to use a legal tool known as a citator, which will show you subsequent cases where your source has been cited, as well as any negative stories, including whether it has been overturned, reversed, questioned, or simply differentiated. So if that`s the primary law you want, it makes sense to look at it first, right? Not so fast. While you need primary legal sources to support your case, in many cases it`s much easier – and more efficient use of your time – to start your research in secondary sources such as practice guides, articles, and legal articles. Whether you`re a law student or an experienced lawyer, learning extensive legal research (or improving your existing legal research process) is a skill that can give you a competitive edge. Learning excellent legal research techniques – from developing a more efficient research process to adopting cloud-based tools to conduct better, faster and smarter legal research – will help you better support your cases and clients. If you want even more tips on how to conduct smarter legal research, you`ll find this blog post useful. In addition to important basic information about your legal topic, secondary sources save time: instead of starting from scratch, you can use the expert work already done. Sharon Miki writes for Clio on legal technology and legal affairs. As an experienced freelance writer and professional writer, she is passionate about creating fascinating, useful and well-researched articles. Each of the three types of legal sources you work with has a purpose in the legal research process.
Here`s a brief overview: However, it`s important to remember that digital research and analysis tools should be seen as an improvement to the legal research experience, rather than an eviction from a lawyer`s examination, analysis, and judgment. A lawyer uses their knowledge of their client, the facts, precedent, expert opinions and their own experience to predict the likely outcome of a particular case. Digital search products improve this process by providing more data on a wider range of variables, allowing a lawyer to consider even more information. Don`t let your research be wasted or let facts slip through the cracks due to a poor documentation system. By using secure cloud-based fact management software, you can record your searches in an efficient, organized, and accessible way. Do you have a legal mentor? Find out how you and your law firm can benefit from legal mentors throughout your career. What for? Because secondary sources give you a complete overview of legal topics, so you don`t have to start your research from scratch. After the secondary sources, you can move on to the primary sources of law. Today, with cloud-based online legal research software, you can perform remote searches when used with law firm management software like Clio Manage. The flexibility of searching from anywhere streamlines the legal research process and increases efficiency. Here are some examples: Whatever the legal research project, you need to identify the relevant legal problem as well as the outcome or relief you are looking for. This information guides your research so you can focus on the topic.
Many lawyers and assistants choose to advance their careers by completing a Doctor of Laws (JD) program. While not all law firms require employees to have this certification, some state and federal courts may require researchers and paralegals to have your JD qualification to qualify for various roles. The Juris Doctor program focuses on legal thinking, principles of U.S. legal institutions, and case analysis studies specific to various areas of law such as real estate and banking. The Juris Doctor can also help you prepare to become a full-fledged lawyer in case you consider doing so in the future. Most lawyers enter the field as paralegals or paralegals with a minimum of associate degree. However, there are a few additional steps to consider when pursuing this career path: Compiling your research into a legal memorandum is a necessary part of conducting legal research, as it allows you to identify information gaps that may have consequences at a later stage. Legal writing presents challenges in itself, and it`s not a bad approach for you to supplement your legal case research with a book from a local law library on how to present your findings. In general, a legal memorandum does five things: Legal research is the process of discovering and understanding all the legal precedents, laws, regulations, and other legal authorities that apply in a case and inform a lawyer`s course of action. When it comes to the practice of law, we often think of legal experience.
But even the most successful legal argument will ultimately fail without solid legal research. Bloomberg Law subscribers can access our expert guide to writing a research memo, written by Aaron Goodman, Of Counsel at Baker McKenzie. These lawyers can often work within the judicial system and other government agencies, but they can also find employment in real estate, insurance, finance, and private companies. Many lawyers perform tasks related to the collection and dissemination of legal information and client history. Several tasks that lawyers take on in their careers include: Analyzing research papers and resources to verify their accuracy Whether you are a student still studying at law school or an experienced lawyer with years of experience, it is important to have strong research skills to create a winning argument. That`s why it`s so important to know how to do legal research, including how to get started and the steps to follow. There is a reason why there are entire law courses and countless books that focus exclusively on the methodology of legal research. In fact, many lawyers will spend their entire careers improving their research skills – and even then, they may not have perfected the process. When doing legal research, it`s easy to go down rabbit holes. Resist the urge to start looking at individual cases that may prove irrelevant. Instead, start with secondary sources, which often provide a predominant statement of the law for a particular topic. These sources save you time and direct you to the field of law and the most important topics.
Knowing where to start a difficult legal research project can be challenging. However, if you already understand the basics of legal research, the process can be considerably easier, if not faster. Lawyers rely on strong research and analytical skills to review and organize complex legal information in order to present their findings.