Forum Discussion Question:
All the passengers getting off a flight to Miami were taken to a small room at the airport by Miami police. They were questioned and their clothing and luggage was searched.
You decide to begin by looking for cases although you usually start with secondary sources.
What was your best case search on Westlaw Edge and on Lexis Advance? Be detailed. Your colleagues should be able to replicate your search.
Also, include in your answers the best case from both searches.
A few takeaways……
Were you surprised when sometimes you and or you colleagues did not find the same case on both Westlaw Edge and Lexis Advance? Does this mean that if you only had one system that you might not find a very good case?
One question that would need to be answered is whether the same jurisdictions were being searched? Was one researchers searching all federal cases and the other federal and state cases? Was one just searching United States Supreme Court cases? It is very important to consider the jurisdictions to be searched. One of the items that you will need to include in the RG is the jurisdiction being searched for cases, statutes, and regulations. For other items. you need to explain the what resources are being searched.
Sometimes researchers assume that they can use the exact same search for both Westlaw Edge and Lexis Advance. You may need to adjust your search query depending upon the system. Remember that Westlaw Edge’s and Lexis Advances’ search algorithms are different and that their search structures may also be different.
And, even on one system, it may take a number of searches to find the search that will retrieve the best results.
A number of you limited your jurisdiction to cases from Florida (not sure if just state cases or if Florida federal cases were included) and United States Supreme Court cases. Is this a federal or state issue? If you are unsure, you would want to search both jurisdictions. And, you would not want to limit to just the U.S. Supreme Court cases. Remember, the cases from 11th federal circuit court of appeals also are mandatory.
Also, one of my directions was to be sure that your colleagues could replicate your search. Many of you did not follow that instruction. It is very important to learn how to explain the steps you took when searching an issue. It is important because you will need to do so when for your Research Guide and you will need to do it in practice.
Many times in practice you will be asked to update your work product. You cannot bill the client again for your time and the databases charges to research from the beginning. You need to figure out a system to keep notes on the successful searches that you used for each work product.
Also, there will be times that you are researching many projects at once and you will need to keep good notes on what you have done on each so that you can pick up the quest without having to redo anything.
You may realize that your use of Westlaw Edge, Lexis Advance, etc. will be billed to the client or to the firm. Your time will also be billed to the client or to the firm and you need to be as efficient and accurate as possible.
Please let me know your questions about this post and any other questions about this discussion forum question.