Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Circuit Courts Archiving Cites to Online Sources

Citing to internet sources can be tricky: the content can change, the address can change, or the site could disappear altogether. Courts have particular difficulty becuase those citations ultimately get incorporated into the law. The federal judiciary has begun addressing the issue. As reported in The Third Branch, The Newsletter of the Federal Judiciary in July 2009:

The Judicial Conference has issued a series of “suggested practices” to assist courts in the use of Internet materials in opinions. [...] The guidelines suggest that, if a webpage is cited, chambers staff preserve the citation by downloading a copy of the site’s page and filing it as an attachment to the judicial opinion[.]>

At least two of the circuits' law libraries--the fifth and the ninth--make those pdfs available from their websites. Watch here for other courts making those resources readily available.

5th Circuit Opinion Archived URLS -
9th Circuit Opinion Archived URLS-

-- Patrick Flanagan

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