Shaunna Mireau on Canadian Legal Research

Tips on Canadian legal research from the Library at Field LLP.
Postings are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the firm.

June 15, 2009

Importance of noting up using a variety of sources

Because this is such an excellent explanation, I am copying in it's entirety a post from the Law Librarian Blog. This post reminds us to look everywhere. For a good noteup checklist, contact me.

Maybe Westlaw thinks Scalia was wrong, but…

On May 26, 2009, the United States Supreme Court decided Montejo v. Louisiana, which overruled the Court’s 1986 decision, Michigan v. Jackson, 475 U.S. 625 (1986). To be sure, Justice Scalia in his majority opinion in Montejo stated on page 21 of the slip opinion “Michigan v. Jackson should be and now is overruled.” Also, on May 26, 2009, my colleague, William Gaskill, planned to use Michigan v. Jackson as a Shepard’s/Keycite example in his Legal Research Bootcamp course. He sent his class an email asking them to determine whether Michigan v. Jackson was still good law by class that evening. I opined that students’ answers would be different depending on the time of the day they verified the case. I was wrong. The next morning, William had informed me that according to Keycite, Michigan v. Jackson is still good law.

We’ve been keeping track of the case over the past two weeks and as of today at 3:30 p.m. EST, according to Westlaw, Michigan v. Jackson is still good law. West did enter Montejo into its system, but someone must have read over Nino’s quote or maybe they just figured the majority was wrong. In any event, I hope for sake of criminal lawyers everywhere that this will be remedied soon.

By the way, West, Shepard's picked up the change in Michigan’s status.

David C. Walker, Reference Librarian, Charleston School of Law



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