WESTLAW UK – 20 MINUTE DEMONSTRATION (BASIC) INTRODUCTION • • • • •
It’s an online user interface connected to a large number of legal databases (runs behind the scenes). Results retrieved are fully cross-referenced & interlinked so you can view everything in one source. You have access to really great analysis docs, a lot of the wider reading and research has been done for you, enabling you to access all related information in one source. As a law student – researching is really time-consuming so by using WLUK your legal research will be very efficient leaving you with more time to concentrate on your assignments etc. Worth noting now for those hoping to go on to pursue legal careers/vac schemes, you won’t get textbooks to tell you the answers so you will have to rely on your ability to research effectively
STARTING YOUR RESEARCH (WELCOME PAGE) WLUK Icon Navigation toolbars Front page search/cross-database searching • •
Search for Case law, Legislation, Journal articles, Current Awareness & EU using the search suggestions Type your search into the box and select the content you wish to search.
Index of Legal Terms •
Often the best way to begin your research is to find the definition of your legal term Free Text
Show results (Jowitt, Stroud and Osborns and WLUK content) You can also search for Latin phrases that you may come across in law reports: Free Text
Insight • •
Online encyclopaedia of legal articles written by expert practitioners and academics in their legal field, highly authoritative, updated as soon as the law changes. Great source for linking you to the key case law, legislation and just general information regarding a topic of law. Free Text Search
Show link to insight article with link to cases, legislation and Chitty. Mention share and watch option and twitter feed and author details Browse
“Discharge by breach”
Family & private life >Marriage > Formation of marriage
Show Analysis section – good for those wanting the extra marks or current issues for dissertations
FINDING CASE LAW Cases Screen •
Screen spilt in to two: Top half - search results using search template Lower half - search for results by browsing down to an individual document (like your library shelf)
Case Status Icons
Automatically Unfair Dismissal
Results are retrieved in reverse chronological order with the most recent result at the top. •
Indicating some form of positive or neutral judicial consideration. This icon recommends that this is a good case to use. From the results page you can link into either the full text case report or the case analysis document
Indicating mixed or mildly negative judicial consideration. The case is still good law but needs some interrogation Use case analysis documents to explore treatment of the case to gain a wider understanding
Indicating if a case has been overruled BY A SUBSEQUENT CASE or reversed by a higher court
“Appeal Outstanding” – case analysis docs for further details of the appeal
Case Analysis Document •
These are descriptive documents aimed at helping you understand the case in its wider context offering you links to other relevant cases or legislation Case Digest - This section gives you a summary and an abstract of the case. Also includes information on the judges, council and solicitor firm for the case. Appellate History & Status - Shows you the appeal history of the case along with any appeals that may have been filled in higher courts Related Cases - This section will list any other cases between the same parties on different points of law Significant cases Cited - Shows details of the significant cases cited within the judgment All Cases Cited - Lists every case cited within the judgment. Key Cases Citing - key cases which have cited this case – worth exploring as it will be useful to find cases to use when you comparing and contrasting your cases in your assignments. You will hopefully gain extra marks for research by using different cases other than those found in your textbooks All Cases Citing - Shows a list of all cases citing the case you are viewing. Significant Legislation - Our editors have picked out the key legislation which has been cited this case Legislation Cited - This section contains a list of all legislation citied in the case. Also includes EU legislation but does not include treaties.
You can also find secondary materials, such as related journal articles or point you to relevant chapters in textbooks Journal Articles - Lists ALL journal articles about this case including the ones in full text and abstracts. Books - This section will have links to citing paragraphs from our practitioner texts such as Palmers or Chitty. Folders/Delivery/Alerts and Full Screen - Use these options on the right hand corner of the screen to add to folder, print/save/email, alerts etc.
FINDING LEGISLATION • •
Westlaw legislation is fully amended and consolidated legislation. So it shows you the law as it stands today. Also provides helpful analysis documents relating to individual sections and the act as a whole Screen spilt in to two: Search at the top or browse at the bottom:
Search by title • • •
Counter Terrorism Act 2008
Results list whole pieces of legislation and statutory instruments. Linking takes you to the Arrangement of Act or Table of Contents for the act. The Arrangement of Act provides: links to sections of the act, a PDF of the entire act and icons at section level
Icons • • • • •
In Force Not in Force Partially In Force Repealed Amendments Pending
Overview Docs/General Materials •
Provides you with extra information and links to important material related to the legislation
Section 1 • •
The current version in force is identified by the in force icon. The text is fully consolidated. The version in force date is the date that this version came into force and is not the commencement date.
Viewing Historic and Prospective versions •
View prospective law using the forward arrow on the versioning tool. Using the arrows to jump forward, we can see what the section will look like in the future when the amendments come into force.
If there is an in force date for pending amendments it will be shown, if not it will say “date to be appointed”. View historic law using the backward arrow on the versioning tool.
Legislation Analysis • • • •
Exactly like the case analysis documents Provides links to important information regarding the section you are looking at. Commencement date – gives the date the section entered into force. Table of Amendments - life story of the provision i.e. when it came into force and any subsequent amendments
Annotated Statutes •
This symbol in your search results indicates that legislation has been annotated
Annotations are there to help clarify any ambiguity in the law for example, explanations of the scope and the effect of the legislations, clarify definitions etc... Annotations are there to ensure you’ve interpreted the legislation correctly and therefore will apply it correctly to your legal issue.