Why do lawyers need to carry out legal research?

In most instances, the purpose of legal research is to find support for a specific legal issue or decision. For example, attorneys must conduct legal research if they need court opinions (that is, case law) to back up a legal argument they are making in a motion or brief filed with the court.

The importance and benefits of legal research are: It is an important tool for lawyers and law firms. It governs the pertinent issues involving the basic search for a case that can be used as a consulting case. A good legal research can dispose of or eradicate the possibilities of failure.

Legal research is an very important tool for individual lawyers and law firms irrespective of their practice areas. It involves basic search for land mark case governing the issues in question. … The most basic step in legal research is to find the leading case governing the issues in question.

1.1 Legal research is an essential lawyering skill

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The ability to conduct legal research is essential for lawyers, regardless of area or type of practice. The most basic step in legal research is to find the leading case governing the issues in question.

Treatises, Handbooks, and Practice Guides

This is where attorneys commonly start their legal research as well. Treatises are books that provide summaries of the law by topic. Treatises may be easier to understand than a statute, because treatises are usually written in less formal language.

Legal research is performed by anyone with a need for legal information, including lawyers, law librarians, and paralegals.

Authenticity is the key in legal research and hence, finding accurate, relevant and authentic information is of great importance. The internet is a goldmine for information and legal research tools such as search engines, blogs, case law databases, etc. augment the entire process of legal research.

There are essentially 2 main methods of legal research – doctrinal and non-doctrinal.

  • Doctrinal Method. Doctrinal or non-empirical research is a type of research wherein the subject material for the research is found in existing material such as books, articles, statutes, judgements etc. …
  • Non-Doctrinal Method.

To propound a new legal concept. To analyze the law and legal institutions from the point of view of history. To examine the nature & scope of the new law or legal institutions. To ascertain the merits & demerits of old law or institutions and to given suggestions for a new law.

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Legal research is an essential part of legal practice and the associated skills which are used to locate case law, legislation and other legal information that may be relevant to a matter are important to master.

Legal Research Basics

  1. Introduction.
  2. Step 1: Preliminary Analysis.
  3. Step 2: Create a Research Plan.
  4. Step 3: Consult Secondary Sources.
  5. Step 4: Search for Authority – Statutes, Regulations, and Cases.
  6. Step 5: Evaluate Your Search Strategy and Results As You Go.
  7. Step 6: Update & Final Check.
Presence of a lawyer