Legal Research Blog
Despite the popularity of online legal research, we still believe in the beauty and power of the casebook! Perkins Coie LLP recently remodeled its Seattle office and repurposed some of its print books into an amazing reference desk. We often think of case law as a pillar of the American legal system but this wonderful piece of art really brings that concept to life by using the books as the “structural and conceptual building blocks” of the desk.
Read more about the desk at the American Association of Law Libraries Spectrum blog and view more pictures of the books at the artist’s website.
From our whole team in Washington D.C., we’d like to wish you and your family a warm season’s greeting. If you find yourself doing some research over the next couple weeks, please note our holiday customer support hours:
Monday, December 24th: 8am-5pm Eastern
Tuesday, December 25th: Closed
Wednesday, December 26th: 8am-8pm Eastern (normal customer support hours)
Monday, December 31st: 8am-5pm Eastern
Tuesday, January 1st: Closed
Wednesday, January 2nd: 8am-8pm Eastern (normal customer support hours)
Have a wonderful holiday, and happy new year!
This week, the ABA Journal noted that as clients have become more cost-conscious, some are refusing to pay for research costs. Of course, you still have to conduct the legal research, but consider how using Fastcase can help minimize those non-recoverable costs.
1. Increase cost recovery by shifting non-billable or discounted research.
What happens if a client informs you that he or she is unwilling to pay for your research costs? Rather than conduct the research and absorb the cost that would have been billed, use Fastcase. Fastcase allows for unlimited research at a set price. Since there’s no charge for printing, downloading, or emailing cases, you know exactly how much you’re spending before you even begin your research. By shifting research that would be discounted or otherwise non-reimbursable, your overall percentage of recoverable costs will increase. When you run fewer unrecoverable searches, you will be able to bill through a greater percentage of your research cost, thus increasing your cost recovery. Also consider adding paralegals or law clerks onto your Fastcase subscription. With the support staff using Fastcase, you can have them conduct the preliminary research and pull all the cases you need without worrying about the usage amount or cost of printing cases.
2. Stop incurring “off-plan” charges when you’re researching outside your subscription coverage.
If your other provider’s subscription is limited to your main practice jurisdiction(s) and you need to do research in another jurisdiction, use Fastcase instead of paying to go “off-plan.” A national appellate or national premium plan on Fastcase includes federal and state caselaw for all 50 states and the District of Columbia, as well as the federal statutes and most state statutes. You can quickly research surrounding jurisdictions to see how they treated a similar issue, or look up a case that’s outside your subscription and was cited by opposing counsel.
3. Use Fastcase when providing pro bono services.
Finally, in this season of giving, many of us are looking for ways to help those in need. If you provide pro bono services – or want to provide more but are held back by the cost of legal research – consider using Fastcase. The flat fee pricing and unlimited research allows you to share your services with others while still controlling your research costs.
Now that the election season is behind us, what’s in store for federal regulations? The National Law Journal and Legal Times will explore these questions and more in a day-long summit in Washington, DC on December 6, featuring former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer, and a host of prominent former members of congress, including Louisiana Senator John Breaux, former House Democratic Leader Richard Gephardt, former House Speaker Denny Hastert, and former Senator Trent Lott.
The event will be held at the Marriott Wardman Park at 2660 Woodley Road N.W. in Washington, DC, and you can register for a discount using this link. The price was originally $795, but using our link you can register for $399, or $199 for in-house counsel. The program has been approved for up to 5 CLE credits.