Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Bar Association Research Benefits Reach State 50

Last week, Fastcase announced a new partnership with the California Lawyers Association. Beginning in 2019, CLA members will receive access to Fastcase as a benefit of bar association membership. This move means that bar associations in all 50 states and the District of Columbia now provide their members with access to at least one of the low-cost research services Fastcase and Casemaker. This fills in the State Bar Association Research Benefits map that the Goodson Blogson has been tracking for several years, updating a map originally developed by 3 Geeks and a Law Blog in March 2010.

Currently, 30 jurisdictions on the state-level list provide their members with free access to exclusively Fastcase; 20 states provide access to exclusively Casemaker. 1 state (Texas) provides its members with access to both services. In addition, a number of county and local bar associations have struck their own deals with the research services.

Both Fastcase and Casemaker contain U.S. federal and state case law, statutory and regulatory codes, court rules, and constitutions. Additional features vary within each service. Fastcase has increased its secondary source libraries in the last few years, offering access to publications by Loislaw and Carolina Academic Press while also launching its own Full Court Press publishing imprint. More recently, the company announced its acquisition of the Law Street Media legal news company. Casemaker partners include the CosmoLex practice management system, the memo bank, access to legal forms, and content from the vLex global law database, featuring primary and secondary legal material from more than 100 countries.

The Duke University community has access to an academic subscription version of Fastcase. Law students and faculty are also eligible to sign up for an educational version of Casemaker called CasemakerX. For information about other online research services, check out the library's research guide to Legal Research on the Web or Ask a Librarian.