Emalus Library Guide to Using Westlaw
 

Prepared by Peter Murgatroyd, Law Librarian, Emalus Campus

 

 

Table of Contents

 

Introduction

Starting a Westlaw session

Ending a Westlaw Session

Outline of the Welcome Screen

Searching for documents

          Searching with natural language

          Searching with terms and connectors

          Restricting your search by field (case name, article title, author’s name)

          Retrieving documents when you know the citation

          Starting a new search

Viewing a search result

The Table of Contents Feature

Accessing and browsing the directory

Appendix:  Westlaw Directory (selected databases relevant to USP )

 

Introduction
Westlaw is a legal database containing case reports, journal articles and legislation from  England and the European Union,  United States, Canada and Australia.  Key resources for USP students  include the full text of the UK Law Reports 1865 - , a legal journals index,  full text law journals from the UK, Canada, and the US, as well as legislation from the UK.  The database allows you to easily search across many databases at the same time and has extensive cross referencing. 

 

Starting a Westlaw Session

Westlaw can be accessed from the 'Law Resources ' page of the library web.  No password is required.  Users from all USP campuses and centres should be able to gain direct access to the database.  Please contact your centre librarian if this is not the case.

 

 

Outline of the Welcome Screen

 

The Welcome Screen has been specifically formatted for the use of USP students and staff allowing users to search simultaneously across the full text case databases from the UK, Australia, Canada and the United States.  Similarly it is possible to simultaneously search across legal journals indices and the full text of law journals and reviews from those same jurisdictions.  To choose the databases in which to search you simply place a check in the box alongside the database , type in your search terms and click on Go.

 

*Highly recommended is the 'UK Case Law Locator' database.  This database only includes significant reported decisions from 1865 - (across all jurisdictions) .Each document is an abstract which contains a summary of the case and history information and
 reported citations.  Using UK Case Law Locator to search reduces information overload and allows you to quickly identify important cases.  There are links to the full text of all decisions on the database.

**If you already know your citation use the 'Find by citation' search option on the left hand panel of the search screen

 

 

 

 
 
Number 1 image
Search for:  
Terms and Connectors | Natural Language
Select a date restriction:
Connectors and Expanders Reference List Link Connectors/Expanders Reference List

 
 
Number 2 image
In the following database(s):  
 
 
  Go to:

 
  My Personal Databases Back to Top
  Canadian Abridgment (ABRIDGMENT) Link to information about database
  Legal Journals Index [UK & EU] (LJI) Link to information about database
  Current Index to Legal Periodicals (CILP) Link to information about database
  All Canadian Legislation (CANST-RULES-ALL) Link to information about database
  All Canadian Statutes (CANST-ALL) Link to information about database

 
  United Kingdom Collection Back to Top
  UK Case Law Locator (UK-CASELOC) Link to information about database
  All United Kingdom Reports (UK-RPTS-ALL) Link to information about database
  UK Laws in Force (UK-LIF) Link to information about database
  UK Current Awareness Cases (UKCA-CASES) Link to information about database
  UK Journals & Law Reviews (UK-JLR) Link to information about database

 
  Australia Collection Back to Top
  Australian Cases (AU-ALLCASES) Link to information about database
  High Court of Australia (HCA-CS) Link to information about database
  Federal Court of Australia (FCA-CS) Link to information about database
  Commonwealth Law Reports (CLR-RPTS) Link to information about database
  Federal Court Reports (FCR-RPTS) Link to information about database
  Unreported High Court of Australia Cases (HCA-UNR) Link to information about database
  Unreported Federal Court of Australia Cases (FCA-UNR) Link to information about database

 
  Canada Collection Back to Top
  Canada All Case Law (CAN-ALLCASES) Link to information about database
  Canadian Law Reviews, Texts & Bar Journals (TP-CANADA) Link to information about database

 
  United States Collection Back to Top
  All Federal & State Cases (ALLCASES) Link to information about database
  All Federal and State Case Law Headnotes (ALLCASES-HN) Link to information about database
  United States Code Annotated (USCA) Link to information about database
  United States Code Annotated - International Law Chapters (FINT-USCA) Link to information about database
  US Code of Federal Regulations - International Law Sections (FINT-CFR) Link to information about database
  US Journals and Law Reviews (LAWREV-PRO) Link to information about database

 
  European Union Collection Back to Top
  All European Union Materials (EU-ALL) Link to information about database
  European Union Cases Combined (EU-CS-ALL) Link to information about database
  European Union Legislation (EU-LEG) Link to information about database

 
  Hong Kong Collection Back to Top
  Hong Kong Case Law Combined (HK-CS-ALL) Link to information about database

Searching for Documents

Westlaw provides two basic search methods: Natural Language and Terms and Connectors, so you can research the way that is most successful for you.   

Natural Language Searching allows you to enter in your search query as if you were asking a person a question.

Searching with Terms and Connectors

It is possible to do fairly advanced searching using a range of connecting terms and truncation symbols as explained in the tables below:

 

Connector

Used to search for

Example

"_"

phrases

"personal injury"

or

synonyms

director or officer

/s

terms in the same sentence

director /s liability

/p

terms in the same paragraph

liability /p harassment

/n

terms within specified proximity (n=number)

hazardous w/3 waste

& or and

terms in the same document

mitigation & liability
mitigation and liability

%

to exclude terms

liability % criminal

 

Truncation Symbols

Used to search for

Example

root expander !

to retrieve term variations

liab! will retrieve both liability and liable

universal character *

to retrieve term variations

dr*nk will retrieve both drink, drank, drunk

 

Remember if you run a search on two or more words without including them within quotation marks: "_" then the search will automatically default to an or search so your results may not be what you intended. Westlaw UK does have built in help, so if you are stuck click on the Help link (usually at the top right of the screen) and read it carefully.

Restricting your search by field (case name, article title, author’s name)

You can retrieve a specific case when you know one or more parties' names.  Simply enter the abbreviation ti and then surround the party name in brackets.

E.g. To find Mabo decisions reported in the Commonwealth Law Reports, check the Commonwealth law Reports box on the Welcome Page and enter

ti(mabo)

The same method works when looking for journal articles by title e.g. to find articles with the words hazardous waste in the title, check the appropriate database boxes and enter

Ti(“hazardous waste”)

The same also applies when looking for articles by author using the abbreviation au

E.g.  Au(Farran) will locate journal articles by Sue Farran.


You can also search for statutes in the same way by using the abbreviation ci.

e.g. Ci("sale of goods") will look for legislation where the phrase "sale of goods" appears in the name of the statute.

 

Retrieving cases when you know the citation


To retrieve case documents by citation, type the citation, e.g. [1981] 3 EHRR 150, in the Find by Citation text box and click GO.
You do not need to include brackets or use exact spacing, capitalization or punctuation.

 

For example, type [2000] 2 HKLRD 312, 2000 2 hklrd 312 or 2000 2hklrd312 to retrieve the same document. If you are uncertain about the correct format for your request, type the publication abbreviation, e.g. EHRR, in the Find by Citation text box and click GO to display a fill-in-the-blank template.

You can retrieve the following types of documents by typing their citations:

bullet Case Law
bullet Statutes
bullet Statutory Instruments
bullet Regulations
bullet Topical Materials
bullet Legal Practice Materials
bullet Law Review and Bar Journal Articles
bullet Treatises
bullet Newspaper and Magazine Articles


 
International Citation Examples

The following list shows citation formats for selected materials available on Westlaw International.

Document Type

Example

United Kingdom statutes
Statute of Monopolies 1623, c 3, s1

uk st 1623 c 3 s 1

United Kingdom cases

 

Comdel Commodities Ltd v. Siporex Trade SA [1991] 1 A.C. 148

1991 1 ac 148

Harper v. National Coal Board [1974] Q.B. 614

1974 qb 614

Wallace v. Major [1946] K.B. 473

1946 kb 473

Perham v. Kempster [1907] 1 Ch. 373

1907 1 ch 373

D v. Registrar General [1998] Fam. 19

1998 fam 19

Customs and Excise Comrs v. Anchor Foods Ltd (No. 2) [2000] C.P. Rep. 19 (1999)

2000 cp rep 19

British Airways Plc v. EC Commission [1998] 3 C.M.L.R. 429

1998 3 cmlr 429

 

 

Starting a new search

Click on the Welcome button at the top of your screen to begin a new search.

 
Viewing a search result

The search result screen will list “hits” in groups of 20 on the left hand side of your screen (note – the maximum is 400 – if you get 400 hits it means you need to edit your search!).  You can scroll down this list and select a “hit” and go straight to the full text.

On the right hand side of the screen you will be able to view the first “hit” in full.

Click on the doc buttons at the bottom of your screen to proceed to the next document.  Click on the term button to go to where your search terms appear in the document you are viewing.

 

Note that above the full text of your “hit” some cases will have a History button.  Click on this button and an analysis of the case appears on the light hand side of the screen including  where reported, summary of legislation cited, a history of the case and secondary sources such as articles will be listed.

 

UK Case Reporter document identification graphic

Case History Available

2001 WL 1560759
ANGELO PEROTTI Appellant

 


The same information can be gained by clicking on the Tab Analysis on the left hand side of the screen.  Other useful tabs are the commentary tab that links to any commentary on the case and the TOA tab that lists legislation and cases cited in the case.

Cite List

 

Analysis

 

Commentary

 

TOA

 

 

Table of Contents feature

Overview
The Table of Contents (TOC) service is a convenient way to browse the table of contents for a publication, and view a document in the context of the sections surrounding it and retrieve related sections.  Click

Browse the list of available tables of contents by click on the Table of Contents tab at the top of the screen. Click on the plus (+) or minus (-) symbol to browse the publications in the various categories. To select a publication, click its hypertext link, e.g., United States Code Annotated.

Browse the Table of Contents for a Publication
When you choose a publication, the table of contents for that publication is displayed in the right frame. Click the plus (+) or minus (-) symbol to browse the subheadings listed under the various chapter titles or headings.

bullet To view the text of a specific section, click its hypertext link.
bullet To view all sections from one or more chapters, headings or subheadings, select the check boxes next to them in the table of contents and then click GO.

View Documents in Context
You can view the table of contents for a document displayed in the right frame by clicking the TOC tab. The table of contents is displayed in the left frame next to the full text of your document.

Materials that can be browsed in the Table of Contents for the UK include the following:

 United Kingdom
some altsome altScope link takes you to scope information for this database
Statutes
some altsome altScope link takes you to scope information for this databaseStatutory Instruments
some altsome altScope link takes you to scope information for this databaseCivil Procedure
some altsome altScope link takes you to scope information for this databaseCorporate Business
some altsome altScope link takes you to scope information for this databaseCrime
some altsome altScope link takes you to scope information for this databaseHuman Rights
some altsome altScope link takes you to scope information for this databaseIntellectual Property
some altsome altScope link takes you to scope information for this databaseLandlord & Tenant

To illustrate its usefulness the Civil Procedure heading above includes the following:

Click to add to TOC Search Selections.Expand table of contents listingCivil Procedure from Sweet and Maxwell
Click to add to TOC Search Selections.Expand table of contents listingCivil Procedure Forms
Click to add to TOC Search Selections.Expand table of contents listingA-Z of Civil Litigation from Sweet and Maxwell
Click to add to TOC Search Selections.Expand table of contents listingBullen, Leake and Jacob's - Precedents of Pleadings from Sweet and Maxwell
Click to add to TOC Search Selections.Expand table of contents listingCivil Procedure Reports
Click to add to TOC Search Selections.Expand table of contents listingStatutes
Click to add to TOC Search Selections.Expand table of contents listingStatutory Instruments


Accessing and Browsing the Directory

The Westlaw Directory lists all databases available on Westlaw.

To access the entire Directory from any Westlaw Welcome page, click Directory on the toolbar. Click the plus (+) and minus (-) symbols to browse the Directory. To view information about a database's content and coverage, click the Scope icon (a lowercase i in a green circle to the right of the database name and identifier).

 

Appendix

 

Westlaw Directory (selected databases at a glance)

 

U.S. Federal Materials
U.S. State Materials
International/Worldwide Materials
Westlaw Australia
Cases
     Australian Cases (AU-ALLCASES)
     High Court of Australia Cases (HCA-CS)
     Federal Court of Australia Cases (FCA-CS)
Law Reports
     Commonwealth Law Reports (CLR-RPTS)
     Federal Court Reports (FCR-RPTS)
Unreported Judgments
Practice Areas
Westlaw International
General Subscription
Topical Materials - General Subscription
Regional Legal Materials - General Subscription
Canada
Cases
     - British Columbia Cases All (BC-CS-ALL)
     - British Columbia Law Reports (BCLR-CS)
     - Business Law Reports (BLR)
     - Canada GST Cases (GSTC)
     - Canada Supreme Court (SCC-CS)
     - Canada Tax Cases (CTC)
     - Canadian Bankruptcy Reports (CBR-CS)
     - Canadian Cases on Employment Law (CCEL)
     - Canadian Cases on Pensions and Benefits (CCPB)
     - Canadian Cases on the Law of Insurance (CCLI)
     - Canadian Cases on the Law of Securities (CCLS)
     - Canadian Cases on the Law of Torts (CCLT)
     - Canadian Environmental Law Reports (CELR)
     - Carswell's Practice Case (CPC-CS)
     - Construction Law Reports (CLR)
     - Criminal Reports (CR-CS)
     - Estates and Trusts Reports (ETR-CS)
     - Federal Court of Canada (CAN-FC)
     - Immigration Law Reporter (IMMLR)
     - Manitoba Cases (MB-CS)
     - Manitoba Cases All (MB-CS-ALL)
     - Motor Vehicle Reports (MVR)
     - Municipal and Planning Law Reports (MPLR)
     - New Brunswick Cases (NB-CS)
     - New Brunswick Cases All (NB-CS-ALL)
     - Newfoundland Cases (NF-CS)
     - Newfoundland Cases All (NF-CS-ALL)
     - Northwest Territories Cases (NWT-CS)
     - Northwest Territories Cases All (NWT-CS-ALL)
     - Northwest Territories Reports (NWTR-CS)
     - Nova Scotia Cases (NS-CS)
     - Nova Scotia Cases All (NS-CS-ALL)
     - Ontario Cases (ON-CS)
     - Ontario Cases All (ON-CS-ALL)
     - Personal Property Security Act Cases (PPSAC)
     - Prince Edward Island Cases (PE-CS)
     - Prince Edward Island Cases All (PE-CS-ALL)
     - Quebec Cases (QC-CS)
     - Quebec Cases All (QC-CS-ALL)
     - Real Property Reports (RPR-CS)
     - Reports of Family Law (RFL)
     - Saskatchewan Cases (SK-CS)
     - Saskatchewan Cases All (SK-CS-ALL)
     - Tax Court of Canada (CAN-TX)
     - Western Weekly Reports (WWR)
     - Yukon Cases (YK-CS)
     - Yukon Cases All (YK-CS-ALL)
     Canada All Federal Courts (CAN-ALLFEDS)
     - Canada Supreme Court (SCC-CS)
     - Federal Court of Canada (CAN-FC)
     - Tax Court of Canada (CAN-TX)
     Canada All Provinces (CAN-ALLPROVINCES)
     Administrative Law Reports (ADMINLR)
Law Reviews, Bar Journals and Legal Periodicals
     Texts & Periodicals - Canadian Law Reviews, Texts & Bar Journals (TP-CANADA)
     Canadian Journal of Family Law (CANJFL)
     Canadian Journal of Law & Jurisprudence (CANJLJUR)
     Canadian Journal of Law & Society (CANJLS)
     McGill Law Journal (MCGLJ)
     Osgoode Hall Law Journal (OSGHLJ)
     Queen's Law Journal (QUEENLJ)
     Revue Juridique Themis (RJT)
     Saskatchewan Law Review (SASKLR)
     University of New Brunswick Law Journal (UNBLJ)
     University of Toronto Law Journal (UTORLJ)
European Union
Hong Kong
United Kingdom
United States
International Organizations, Treaties & Reference Materials - General Subscripti
Intergovernmental Organizations
Treaties and Other Agreements
     American Society of International Law (ASIL)
     General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, Uruguay Round (GATT)
     International Economic Law Documents (IEL)
     International Legal Materials (ILM)
     International Legal Materials Cumulative Index (ILM-INDX)
     North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)
     U.S. Treaties and Other International Agreements (USTREATIES)
     United Kindgom Human Rights - Treaties (UKHR-TREATIES)
Regional and Topical Subscriptions
Regional Subscriptions
European Union
United States
Topical Subscriptions
Ireland
Westlaw UK
UK Materials
Current Awareness
Cases
     United Kingdom Case Locator (UK-CASELOC)
     All Law Reports (ALL-RPTS)
     United Kingdom Reports All (UK-RPTS-ALL)
     Human Rights Law Reports All (HR-RPTS-ALL)
     Corporate Business Law Reports (CB-RPTS-ALL)
     Criminal Appeal Reports All (CR-RPTS-ALL)
     Intellectual Property Law Reports All (IP-RPTS-ALL)
     Commercial Reports All (COML-RPTS-ALL)
Individual Law Reports
     The Law Reports (LAW-RPTS)
     Civil Procedure Law Reports (CPL-RPTS)
     Common Market Law Reports (CML-RPTS)
     Criminal Appeal Reports (CRA-RPTS)
     Criminal Appeal Reports Sentencing (CRASENT-RPTS)
     Entertainment & Media Law Reports (EML-RPTS)
     Environmental Law Reports (ENV-RPTS)
     European Commercial Cases (ECC-RPTS)
     European Copyright and Design Reports (ECD-RPTS)
     European Human Rights Reports (EHR-RPTS)
     European National Patent Reports (ENP-RPTS)
     European Patent Office Reports (EPO-RPTS)
     European Trade Mark Reports (ETR-RPTS)
     Fleet Street Reports (FLEET-RPTS)
     Human Rights Law Reports (UK) (HRL-RPTS)
     Incorporated Council Law Reports (LAW-RPTS)
     International Litigation Procedure (ILP-RPTS)
     Landlord and Tenant Reports (LT-RPTS)
     Lloyd's Law Reports (LLOYDS-RPTS)
     Personal Injuries and Quantum Reports (PIQ-RPTS)
     Reports of Patent Cases (RPC-RPTS)
     Scots Law Times (SLT-RPTS)
     Smith-Bernal Transcripts (United Kingdom Law Reports) (UKL-RPTS)
Transcripts
Legislation
Journals
     United Kingdom Law Journals Combined (UK-JLR)
     United Kingdom Landlord and Tenant - Journals & Law Reviews (UKLT-JLR)
Individual Journals and Law Reviews
     Company Lawyer (COMPLAW)
     Computer and Telecommunications Law Review (COMPTLR)
     Construction Law Journal (CONSTLJ)
     Conveyancer & Property Lawyer (CONVPL)
     Criminal Law Review (CRIMLR)
     Employment Law Bulletin (EMPLB)
     Entertainment Law Review (ENTLREV)
     European Competition Law Review (ECLR)
     European Human Rights Law Review (EHRLR)
     European Intellectual Property Review (EIPR)
     European Law Review (EURLR)
     Insolvency Intelligence (ININT)
     Insolvency Lawyer (INSOLVL)
     Intellectual Property Quarterly (IPQ)
     International Arbitration Law Review (INTALR)
     International Company & Commercial Law Review (ICCLR)
     International Insurance Law Review (INTILR)
     International Trade Law and Regulation (INTTLR)
     Journal of Business Law (JBL)
     Journal of International Banking Law (JIBL)
     Journal of International Financial Markets (JIFM)
     Journal of Personal Injury Litigation (JPIL)
     Journal of Planning & Environment Law (JPL)
     Landlord & Tenant Review (LANDTENR)
     Planning & Environmental Law Bulletin (PELB)
     Private Client Business (PCB)
     Property Law Bulletin (PROPLB)
     U.K. Corporate Business - Journals and Law Reviews (UKCB-JLR)
Journal Indexes
     Legal Journals Index (LJI)
     Financial Journals Index (FJI)
     Journals Indexed (JI-INDX)
News
Company Information
Legal Directories
By Practice Area
By Jurisdiction
EU Materials
Top US Materials
Topical Materials by Area of Practice
Westnews (News and Business Databases) 
CourtLink Dockets
Public Information, Records and Filings
Law Reviews, Bar Journals & Legal Periodicals
Forms, Treatises, CLEs and Other Practice Material
Legal News, Highlights and Notable Trials
Directories and Reference Materials
Databases Listed by Provider
KeyCite, ALR and American Jurisprudence
WestlawPRO and Westlaw Libraries
What's New and Customer Information

 

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Last Updated on: Monday, 16 July 2007