Online US legal research community

By | 3 March 2015

Whether you are feeling cut off and isolated from the familiar, or just starting off with US law as a foreigner and wondering what the buzz is over there, then a site such as may be just what you are looking for! casetext-com1Casetext came out of Beta in autumn 2014 – and already claims 250,000 monthly users.

Casetext is both a “public legal research tool” and an “online community.” The site was set up with A* motives “Casetext was founded in response to a major social justice problem: the law is expensive to access and difficult to understand. Our mission above all else is to make all the world’s laws free and understandable.” Signing up enables you to “Search millions of cases and statutes, for free, annotated with insights contributed by the legal community.”  Signing up is also the way to become a contributing commentator, with the more personal potential benefit of raising your profile ….

Even without having signed up (registration is free) you can get a feel of how the site works. A search for a patent law case produced the result below: the central panel gave full text access to the judgment, the right hand column let you tap into other people’s thoughts via annotations and blog posts. The site itself has a useful Features page for you to discover more. And, of course, there is a YouTube video tour of the site


This is just the top slice – the most popular – of the existing Communities, click on the image to scroll down to discover them all!