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New LibGuide: Fastcase

It’s Halloween, so what could be scarier than legal research?  Luckily, the Library has How-to Guides to our legal databases for those new to research or those looking to brush up on their database skills. Our latest guide is How to Use Fastcase.

Fastcase is a legal research service which provides access to state and federal law documents including federal bankruptcy, tax courts, US Supreme Court, federal district and courts of appeal cases as well as federal and state statutes and regulations. This guide focuses on how to use Fastcase on the Library’s public computers, though there is also a Fastcase mobile app available for iPhone, iPad, Android, and Windows Phone devices as well. Fastcase is available on all of the Library’s computers.

Use this guide to learn the fundamentals of Fastcase, from accessing the database in the Library to finding and saving cases, statutes, regulations, and more. There are step-by-step instructions for:

  • Searching Cases
  • Searching Statutes
  • Refining Search Results
  • Printing/Saving Documents

For more database help, check out our How to Use CEB OnLAW, and look for our upcoming How-to Guides on Westlaw and Lexis.

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New LibGuide: Environmental Law

From September 12th to the 14th San Francisco will host the Global Climate Action Summit, an event which will bring together environmental leaders and activists from around the world, both for the summit as well as the hundreds of related affiliate events throughout the week.  Even if you can’t make it to any programs or events, you can still take a look at our newest LibGuide: The San Francisco Law Library Guide to Environmental Law.

In this guide you will find information on local, state, and federal environmental statutes and regulations, library resources in print and online, current news and events, wildfire resources, and links to the many state and federal agencies dealing with environmental issues.

Environment Guide - Snip

Environmental law is an interdisciplinary field which encompasses science, technology, the economy, industry, and more.  To that end, this research guide also includes links to local and global organizations dedicated to environmental activism, as well as informational sites on related topics.  We will keep updating the guide (and all of our guides), so be sure to check back in!


And for more on environmental law, check out our September Books of the Month:

 


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New LibGuide: Free or Low-Cost Legal Services

Do you have a legal issue, but cannot afford to hire an attorney?  There are many ways to obtain free or low-cost legal help, and our new guide, Free or Low-Cost Legal Services, conveniently gathers together many local legal service providers in one place.  Some, but not all, of the services listed in this guide are reserved for people of low-income.

The local resources in this guide are organized in two ways: by topic (landlord/tenant, immigration, etc.) and by organizations that assist specialized populations (e.g. Hispanic, disabled, elderly). Click on a topic or population to view a list of organizations that provide services for that topic or population. There is also a full list of the legal service organizations which you can search.

We will update the guide whenever we find new organizations, so be sure to check back in.


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New LibGuide: Elder Law

June is Elder Abuse Awareness Month, and the Library has a brand new research guide on the topic. From high profile figures, such as philanthropist Brooke Astor and Marvel’s Stan Lee, to our friends and neighbors, elder abuse affects everyone and can come in many different forms, ranging from physical to financial abuse. As the global population ages, protecting these vulnerable members of society from exploitation, neglect, and other injuries has become a growing area of the law.

Elder law covers many different fields, including probate, finance, insurance, criminal law, and torts. The San Francisco Law Library Guide to Elder Law focuses on elder abuse, though many of the materials included also relate to broader aspects of elder law.  The guide collects key California resources on statutory and other remedies against financial and personal abuses from family members, strangers, and caretakers, including reporting resources, planning for long-term care, and for proceedings for guardianship, conservatorship, and other legal approaches to safeguarding the lives and assets of elders.

This guide highlights print and online resources, both in and outside the library, for practitioners and members of the public, including information on obtaining free to low-cost legal services and how to file a restraining order.  This guide will grow to encompass different facets of elder law, so be sure to check back in for updates.


In addition to our recently published guide How to Use CEB OnLAW, you might also be interested in our research guide on Domestic Violence Resources and Veterans Resources.


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New LibGuide: How to Use CEB OnLAW

Did you know that the San Francisco Law Library offers free online access to CEB titles? OnLAW includes over 150 Continuing Education of the Bar, or CEB, publications, including practice guides, action guides and downloadable forms. OnLAW can be accessed from within the library.

New LibGuide: How to Use CEB OnLAW

SF Law Library’s new LibGuide, How to Use CEB OnLAW, provides step-by-step instructions for using OnLAW, including how to:

  • Find a specific CEB title, chapter, or section
  • Search by keyword or phrase and narrow search results
  • Limit searches to specific CEB titles
  • Search by case name or citation
  • Search by statute
  • Find downloadable forms

Find a specific CEB title, chapter, or section

In addition to OnLAW, SF Law Library offers free access to Westlaw, Lexis Advance, HeinOnline and more.


Need help searching Westlaw or Lexis Advance? Check out these PDF guides:

Introduction to Legal Research on Westlaw

Lexis Advance User Guide

 


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Elections LibGuide Updates

Today, May 21, 2018, is the last day to register to vote for the June 5th Statewide Direct Primary Election. Just in time to make this deadline, the San Francisco Law Library has updated our Elections LibGuide with information on candidates and ballot measures featured in the June 5th Election, as well as how to register to vote, where to vote, new materials we have added to our print collection, and more.

For more information on this and other elections, visit the SF Department of Elections and the California Secretary of State’s Elections and Voter Information Page.


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New LibGuide: Veterans Resources

In anticipation of Veterans Day this Saturday, November 11, the Library has a new LibGuide: Veterans Resources.

Veterans law in the US can be traced back all the way to 1636 when the Pilgrims of Plymouth Colony passed a law stating that soldiers disabled from the recent war with the Pequot Indians would be supported by the colony. Since then, the laws and support system for veterans have increased considerably to encompass rights and benefits including education, disability compensation, health care, and survivor benefits.

In this guide you will find resources and links to legal assistance for veterans. Read up on the governing law and policy, or take a look at self-help guides and benefits fact sheets. For those looking for legal help or attorneys interested in helping veterans, there are links to outreach groups, free legal clinics, and lawyer referral services, including VetLex. This site, a partnership between the ABA and the law firm Jones Day, will match veterans in need of pro bono legal services with attorneys. VetLex will launch on a pilot basis by Veterans Day 2017, and will become fully operational nationally by 2018.

We regularly update our research guides, so check back to see what’s new. And don’t forget to take a look at our other guides as well: