Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Law Librarian Research Hack: Docket Tracking

Hack #9: Setting up alerts in Bloomberg to track new docket entries. 

Do you need to keep track of an ongoing case but don't want to waste your time looking it up every day just to discover that there have been no updates? Then consider setting up an alert with Bloomberg! By setting up an alert, the database will send you frequent updates when new docket entries have been added. You can customize your alert and track multiple cases at once! Using this "set it and forget it" technique you can take comfort in knowing that you will be notified when new entries are added. 

If you have a docket that you would like regular updates for, you first need to log into Bloomberg (subscription required) and locate that docket. Once in the docket, on the left side of "General Info" there is a "Track Docket" button. 

Pro tip: Note that there is also an "Update Docket" button. It is always wise to update any docket when you are viewing its contents. 

Picture of docket in Bloomberg with "Track Docket" highlighted

In the "Track Docket Options" box, customize how you would like to receive this alert. You can add your own personal tags*, description, search terms, pick your frequency (weekly, daily, custom), and what time in the day you would like the alert. Add your email in the "distribute to" box. You can add multiple emails so you can easily have alerts sent to your work and personal emails. You can even send them to your colleague or peers! Once you click "Accept" you are set up to receive alerts! 

Track docket box that allows users to customize their alerts.

If you need to modify or delete any of your alerts, go to the top of any Bloomberg page and click on the "My Work History" tab and select "Alerts" and click on "Manage Your Alerts." You will be able to view your alerts on the "Alerts Management" page. The edit feature is on the far right column, you can click on the pencil icon of any alert to update or change that alert. If you would like to delete an alert, select the alert and click "Delete". 

Alert management page with an alert. The edit feature is highlighted on the far right column.

*Personal tags can be added by going to the "Settings" tab on the "Alerts Management" page. 

Practice exercise! 
Log into Bloomberg and select the docket option. Type in "U.S. Supreme Court Dockets" in the "Courts" search bar. Then add docket number "17-778" (Jamar Alonzo Quarles vs. United States) and click "Search". Click into the case and follow the instructions above to create a docket tracking alert. Then go into the "Alerts Management" page to see how you can modify your alert. 

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