Tag: Research

Technology Competency in Legal Practice

For the record, I am not a technophobe, but I sometimes feel like a technosaur.  That feeling is not uncommon in the legal field.  Until a couple of years ago, most articles about law and technology were about how the legal field is slow to adopt technology. As much as it might be true that the legal field was slow on the uptake, I think it’s equally true that now we are working hard to make up for lost time.  From the use of Artificial Intelligence to conduct legal research to chatbots that...

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All things mold

Years ago, I lived in an apartment that abutted the freeway.  Nice place.  It had 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms, a patio in the back and a 8X10 area of empty dirt that I used for my garden.  While we kept our apartment clean, some of our neighbors had not.  This was evident one day when all of a sudden we got a flood of mice running through our backyard area. Apparently, a neighbor had moved out and as they were cleaning their apartment, armies of mice were discovered and started fleeing when cupboards...

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All that Glitters

Picture it.  You’re writing (or about to start writing) a legal document and all of a sudden you get writers block.  What do you do?  Well, if you’re like me, you go take a nap or order up a pizza and drink a liter of root beer.  If pizza and root beer isn’t your thing, maybe you might just head on over to their local county law library for a change of place. Thing is most county law libraries in southern California provide access to either (or both) Westlaw or Lexis for the...

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So, we meet again

I really don’t like Google.  Well, it’s not so much that I don’t like Google as a company so much as it is what it has done to the legal system.  Well, it’s not so much what it’s done to the legal system as it has done to the people who relied solely on Google to supply their legal pleadings.  Time after time I have people come to me complaining about stupid judges who granted demurrers against them when all they did was use the complaint (or answer) they found on...

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We looked (almost) everywhere

What a day!  Some days we get maybe 4-5 people asking anything from how to not get evicted to how to file a class action lawsuit.  Today, I got hammered with well over a dozen questions that covered the gamut of legal research – which isn’t a bad thing.  Its was just a busy day. Then I had a lady ask where she could find a Petition to Open Probate.  Huh.  Thinking a bit, a list of possible titles pop into my head and I start to walk over to California Forms of Pleading and Practice...

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What was lost has been found

You know what’s great about the new year?  It’s a chance for renewal.  Spring cleaning for the soul, is what it is.  Recently, the RCLL has been working on it’s own soul-searching-spring-cleaning by weeding our collection.  That’s right, weeding.  What that means is that we go through the collection looking for resources that are no longer useful for whatever reason and should either be tossed or upgraded.  While we are finding a lot of weeds that should be pulled and discarded,...

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More Forms than you can Count!

Believe it or not, our Indio branch gets a number of interesting (and fun) reference questions.  In fact, I had a patron walk into the library the other day upset over having just lost his case on a traffic infraction and he seemed to be overwhelmed by the entire appeals processes. I tried handing him the Nolo book on fighting traffic tickets but that seemed to be overwhelming, as well.  Then I referred him to the courts website (at http://www.courts.ca.gov/formnumber.htm) where he could search...

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It’s a goldmine!

Having served as a public services law Librarian for going on 13 years, I have discovered some pretty cool resources that help people win (or not lose (there is a difference)) their cases.  While most people generally dive right into California Forms of Pleading and Practice (Lexis) for state matters or Moore’s Federal Practice (Lexis) for federal stuff, it’s the materials they pass by on the way to those resources that can really save the (and their) day. Take, for example, the Newly...

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All I want for Christmas is…peace of mind

Many moons ago when I was young(er), my folks always had me write up a wish list for Santa.  Every year, my brother and I would pour over that list, looking through the Sears Catalog for toys we thought we’d like to have, spend hours drafting the perfect letter to Santa, and then giving the letter to my parents to mail to Santa.  Yet, every #%@#^@#%$!@$ year, we never got what we asked for.  How is it Santa could get it so wrong every single year?!?  Socks?!?  Underwear?!!!? Pajamas?!??!! ...

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