Find Cases by Citation and SelectCite
Loislaw provides two efficient shortcuts for retrieving cases—Find Cases by Citation and SelectCite—when users know the citation in advance.
Find Cases by Citation
Find A Case allows direct retrieval of single or multiple citations. To retrieve a single citation known in advance, simply type it into the Find Cases by Citation dialog box near the top of Loislaw's main browser window. For multiple citations, place a space between each citation being researched.
The forgiving feature of Find Cases by Citation: 'normalization' of citations
Find Cases by Citation does not require a strict match between a user's entry and an official citation. While the entry needs to approximate the form of an official citation, Find Cases by Citation will often work without regard to punctuation or minor typos; users may actually omit periods or spaces (for example) and still retrieve the correct document.
In a process called 'normalization,' Find Cases by Citation compares irregular citations or variants entered by the user to many known forms of official citations. Within a certain range of variation, Find Cases by Citation will select the right form, normalize the user's entry, and retrieve the desired case.
SelectCite is a tool that is very similar to Find Cases by Citation. Use SelectCite when both the source database and the citation are known in advance.
After selecting a single case law database from the Choose a Database page, users will see a Search Page with a SelectCite link. Click the link to access the SelectCite dialog. Enter the volume number, reporter, and page number as appropriate.
Note that the reporter abbreviation appears in a drop-down menu. Loislaw determines in advance which reporters are available for a given case law database.
SelectCite can retrieve up to 5 cases at a time. When all cases are entered, click Run Search near the bottom of the screen to retrieve documents. Click Clear All Fields to begin again.
Note that in addition to Find Cases by Citation and SelectCite, other tools on Loislaw facilitate case law searches. From any Search Page, users may enter citations in the Case Cite box to execute a field search.