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Wayne, Brian, Kirsten and Jessica, are here to help with all of your research needs. We have more than 80 years combined experience in the practice of law and legal research and are happy to help with everything from the basics of starting a project to more complex issues including compiling legislative history, tracking down unpublished decisions or locating court documents. We also provide specialized Research Services. To find out more click here. To contact us call (617) 226-1520 or email Reference@socialaw.com.

THE REFERENCE BLOG

Fastcase – Search United States Primary Law from Your Office

Posted: May 01, 2018

Need primary law from a jurisdiction other than Massachusetts? Our Fastcase database has appellate-level decisions for all fifty states and federal district and appellate courts.  Fastcase also has keyword-searchable versions of the United States Code and Code of Federal Regulations as well as many states’ statutes and regulations.  Fastcase even annotates statutes by automatically linking to cases that have cited to them.

The easiest way to search for cases is to immediately click on the “Advanced Search” link from the Fastcase homepage. This allows you to choose your jurisdiction(s), and view the Fastcase terms and connectors for running searches. If your initial search returns too many results, you can narrow it further by using the “Search Within” feature.  Fastcase will also automatically run searches for relevant law review articles and present them in the “suggested results” sidebar. If you have access to HeinOnline with your Social Law membership, clicking these links will take you directly to a PDF of the law review articles.

Fastcase also has an “Authority Check” feature that allows you to see whether there is any negative treatment of your cases by marking such cases with a distinctive red flag. Clicking on the “Authority Check” link will display a list of cases and articles that cite to your case. You can sort cases by jurisdiction to easily identify decisions that are most relevant to yours.

You can also stay up to date on case law by setting and managing Fastcase’s automatic alerts. After running a search, click the “Add Alert” button;  Fastcase will continue to run this search and whenever a new case matching your terms is added to the database, you will receive an email notification with the citation.