Articles Posted in United States Federal Resources

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According to a recent announcement “[t]he United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit is taking further steps to ensure that information derived from the Internet and cited in official court opinions remains available even if the original online resource ceases to exist or is altered.” As of January 4, 2016, they automatically add PDF files of websites cited in documents to the case docket, accessible through their online case management/filing system and PACER.

From 2008 through 2015 the Ninth Circuit Library created and maintained an online collection of PDF files of Websites Cited in Ninth Circuit Opinions. This change will make the relevant files more apparent to researchers looking at a case docket.

Source: Online Citation Sources Added to Docket, Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, Jan. 1, 2016.

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You can read a hundred articles about wolves and their prey, including the ODFW Wolf webpages, but not a single one will explain exactly WHY wolves are, or were, on endangered species lists.

If you look hard enough you really can find hundreds of articles on the WHY, but here is an interesting one that sums up the complexity of the issue:

Scientific American: “Can Wolves Bring Back Wilderness? [Excerpt]: People may find it hard to adapt to an ecology of predation and fear,” by Jason Mark on October 9, 2015:

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PACER has been a regular jumping bean lately, bouncing up and down, up and down.

While these PACER back-ups are not perfect, and you’ll need to verify document currency when PACER is back up again, some law librarians say in a pinch they might still be useful:

1) PlainSite

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The 1990’s Thomas dot gov becomes the 00’s (beta) Congress dot gov. It’s about time, but bittersweet nonetheless. Thomas was on the cusp, riding the web wave, a time and money saver to us all, and made teaching federal legislative history a little more fun than it was in the all-paper days.

So visit Congress dot gov: Let’s hope its ratings will be higher than the branch of government after which it is named (e.g. see Gallup).

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From a GovLoop blogger: 10 Most Entertaining Government Mobile Apps:

1) Solve the Outbreak, from the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention

2) NASA App: NASA’s official app enables you to discover the galaxies from the palm of your hand.

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If Access to Justice (A2J) is to be something other than a catch-phrase or a pipe dream, lawyers, judges, court administrators, and law librarians need to think, plan, and act creatively on micro and macro initiatives.

Many ideas are already on drawing boards, in app programmer hands, and in pilot project status.  Court Simplification is another A2J Big Idea and here are some places to read about it:

1) You can Google the phrase “court simplification” for information.

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We often hear about the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) in the arena of civil court cases such as divorce, evictions, foreclosures, and default judgments.  However, the SCRA offers other consumer protections to deployed and disabled veterans.  The  Oregon Department of Justice’s Veteran Resources website offers information on consumer protections offered by the SCRA in Oregon including:

  • reinstatement of existing insurance policies after returning from active duty
  • reduced interest rates on existing financial obligations
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From U.S. Courts News, 1/31/13: Access to Court Opinions Expands

A pilot project giving the public free, text-searchable, online-access to court opinions now is available to all federal appellate, district and bankruptcy courts….” [Link to full news release.]

Access will be through FDsys.

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This case arises in discussions of the Second  Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

You can find the U.S. Supreme Court’s opinion in Printz v. United States online using just about any search engine, for example, Google Scholar. (Make sure you click on Legal Documents if you want cases.)

You can also use other free legal research online resources.