First, Secondary: Using American Law Reports to Find Cases

Secondary sources can be invaluable when beginning research in an unfamiliar area of law. American Law Reports (ALR) is a secondary source containing thousands of annotations which compile and summarize caselaw on specific legal issues. Before you start searching for cases, check to see whether there is an ALR annotation covering your research topic; a compilation of relevant caselaw may already exist!

ALR annotations are written by attorneys and updated regularly. They cover both state and federal law, and each annotation contains a table that lists all cited cases by jurisdiction. The complete, current ALR series is available on Westlaw. Most of the ALR series is also available on Lexis; however, only Westlaw has the ALR Index.

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