Oct 08 2014

Profile Image of david

Where to Go, What to Do in Boston

Filed under Fun!,Law Library

If you’re new to the area, you may not know all the great neighborhoods that are easily accessible from campus. BU Today recently ran a great piece on things to do in Coolidge Corner, just a short ride on the Green/C Line or a 15-20 minute walk from the law school. Take in a movie at the Coolidge Theater, shop, have a meal or explore the neighborhood on your own.

Previously, BU Today has highlighted Central Square, Harvard Square, Chinatown, Davis Square, Jamaica Plain and other neighborhoods. If you’re looking for something to do this weekend, these guides are a good place to start.

Other places to look: Boston.com’s Events calendar; The Improper Bostonian (and see the extensive listings in the print edition, distributed throughout the area); The Boston Calendar; and the City of Boston’s City Calendar; to name a few.

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Oct 08 2014

Profile Image of Stefanie

Creating Uniformity in State Law

Filed under Hein Online,Law Library


State law poses several questions at the outset – is this a common law issue or a statutory issue.  How does my state answer this question as opposed to other states?  Two organizations have worked to bring uniformity to the law across state lines both in common law and in statutes.  The American Law Institute is responsible for the Restatements which work with academics to create a clear statement of the rules articulated in common law for a number of areas, like torts, that are primarily embodied in case law.  A number of BUSL professors are reporters for the American Law Institute: Prof. Kull is the reporter for the Restatement of the Law Third, Restitution and Unjust Enrichment;  Prof. Harper is a reporter for the Restatement Third, Employment Law; and Dean O’Rourke is a reporter for the Principles of the Law of Software Contracts.  Other faculty including Prof. Frankel, Prof. Feld and Prof. Gordon have also advised the ALI on various topics.  The National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws, responsible for model laws, work to hammer out statutory language in areas where states would benefit from uniformity.  States can than choose to adopt these model laws.  HeinOnline has excellent libraries for both of these bodies.  If you were looking for the Restatement of Torts 2d, the Model Penal Code or the Uniform Penal Code, you will find it on HeinOnline.


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Oct 07 2014

Profile Image of Steven

Bloomberg, Lexis, and Westlaw Training begins the week of October 13th. Reserve your space TODAY.

Fall training by our vendor representatives begins the week of October 13th. These trainings are strongly recommended for ALL 1L and AmLaw LLM students to pick up where your Library Research classes left off.

Our vendor reps will introduce some of the “bells and whistles” unique to their individual platforms and will assist you in developing that most essential of your lawyering skills: research proficiency.

The reps publicize their training dates on their respective sties and all upcoming training can be found and registered for at the following links:


Bloomberg Law:


Lexis Advance:





(Remember, many employers expect that you will have completed the vendors’ research certification trainings BEFORE day one on the job.)

UPDATE: Bloomberg Law Training will be held on these two dates:

Oct 16 1-145 pm – Room 414

Oct 28 1-145 pm   – Room 414

You may email our Bloomberg Rep., Eric Malinowski, at emalinowski@bna.com to register.



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Oct 06 2014

Profile Image of Stefanie

Technology and the Law

Filed under Apps,CALI,Cloud,Law Library

Increasingly programs are being built that are designed to aid lawyers in answering routine client questions.  Services have arisen that say they will answer your legal questions online.  How does these developments play into traditional legal careers, and is there something out there for the law student technology wiz?  Here is a panel from a recent conference attended by some of the innovators in legal technology which discusses how technology could fundamentally change lawyers, law firms, and the practice of law itself.

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Oct 04 2014

Profile Image of Stefanie

Bestlaw – a companion to Westlaw

Filed under Apps,Law Library,Westlaw

Joe, a law student a Berkeley (who happens to be a programmer), decided there were things he wanted Westlaw to do better.  So he designed a Chrome extension he calls Bestlaw.  It allows you to do some of the things Westlaw already does – like copy with citation and highlight terms, much more easily.  And it allows you to do other things that Westlaw does not do, like toggle to a readable version of the text and unhighlight search terms.


9-26-2014 2-57-02 PM

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Oct 03 2014

Profile Image of Jenna

Pro Bono Work

Filed under Career

Last night marked the annual Boston University School of Law Pro Bono Program Kick-Off. If you would like to find out more about pro bono work, consider checking out some of these resources:




-Building Your Practice with Pro Bono For Lawyers – Law Library Annex, KF336 .M55 2012

This book discusses both national and international pro bono work.  It is organized by topic, such as working with children or aiding in foreclosures, and includes sample forms.


-Thorns and Roses: Lawyers Tell Their Pro Bono Stories – Law Library Annex, KF336 .S36 2010

In this book, Deborah A. Schmedemann has collected a series of narratives from lawyers who have had pro bono experiences. Schmedemann concludes each chapter with some “questions to consider.” 


Electronic Directory:


-Directory of Pro Bono Programs – http://apps.americanbar.org/legalservices/probono/directory.html

Created by ABA’s Standing Committee on Pro Bono & Public Service and the Center for Pro Bono, this website enables individuals to find pro bono programs by state.


Massachusetts Specific Sources:


-The Statewide Pro Bono Opportunities Guide – Pappas Law Library, KFM2484.5.P6 S73

Created by the Massachusetts Bar Association.


-MassProBono – http://massprobono.org/

A website that helps attorneys, paralegals, and law school students find pro bono opportunities in Massachusetts.


-Pro Bono Opportunities Guide – http://www.massbar.org/for-attorneys/volunteer-opportunities/pro-bono-opportunities/pro-bono-opportunities-guide

Compiled by the Massachusetts Bar Association, this website includes a list of agencies that are seeking pro bono assistance.



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Oct 01 2014

Profile Image of david

Same-Sex Marriage at the Supreme Court

Supreme Court watchers are eagerly anticipating word whether the Court will decide to take up the issue whether same-sex couples have a constitutional right to get married. In recent weeks, SCOTUSblog and other news sources reported on the Court’s “long conference” on September 29, where petitions for writs of certiorari in several marriage cases were scheduled for consideration.

If the court declines to address the issue in this Term, the chief consequence would be freedom to marry in 11 states. Federal District Court and Circuit Court of Appeals rulings have struck down marriage bans, but those rulings have been stayed (see here, here and here) pending action by the Supreme Court. Once the stays are lifted, the rulings take effect.

Reports of the oral argument in the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals in August suggested the panel in that case appeared more inclined to uphold the state marriage bans than judges in other Circuit Courts. In an appearance at the University of Minnesota Law School, Justice Ginsburg commented that unless the 6th Circuit upheld a same-sex marriage ban, thus creating a split among the circuits, there would be “no urgency” for the Court to take up the issue in the short term.

To date, there is no word whether the Court will grant certiorari on any of the cases discussed at Monday’s conference. When those decisions have been made, they will be announced in the Court’s Order lists. And there will be extensive coverage in the news outlets that cover the Court. Stay tuned.

UPDATE: On October 2, NPR’s Nina Totenberg noted that the Court had declined, in releasing an Order list in pending cases, to take up any of the pending marriage cases on the merits. She concluded, “sometime in the next few weeks, the high court very likely — though not certainly — will announce which gay-marriage cases it has chosen as test cases for review.”

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Sep 29 2014

Profile Image of Stefanie

Keeping up with the Law

Whether you are interested in a certain legal topic or trying to find a subject for your paper, legal news sources can be incredibly helpful.  Most practicing lawyers rely on a legal news source to keep up with their practice area.  Two of the major publishers in the area of legal news are Law360 and BNA.

Law360, which is now associated with Lexis, focuses on current litigation and other developments in a variety of areas of the law and jurisdictions.  If I was interested in environmental law I could see that on Sept. 25th Hawaii County appealed to the 9th circuit a ruling that struck down a local ordinance restricting the cultivation of GMO crops.



BNA, which is now associated with Bloomberg, has a more regulatory focus and highlights litigation mostly when a decision has been issued by a court.  If I were interested in privacy law, I could find out that on Sept. 25th the EU announced its recommendations for how Google can comply with the court order that it allow individuals to be forgotten.


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Sep 26 2014

Profile Image of Jenna

The Office of the Reporter of Decisions

Filed under Massachusetts

Looking for an opinion from the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court or the Massachusetts Appeals Court? Try checking out the website of the Office of the Reporter of Decisions at: http://www.mass.gov/courts/court-info/sjc/about/reporter-of-decisions/. This website is freely available to the public, and includes the text of opinions that have been published by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court and the Massachusetts Appeals Court since 2001. It also includes unpublished opinions of the Massachusetts Appeals Court that have been written since 2008.

When searching this website, you can browse through a list of recently published opinions.

Office of the Reporter 1

Searching for something more specific? Just click on the link to the Archives of Published Opinions and Unpublished Decisions. From this link, you can narrow your search by adding in terms, a citation, party name, judge, court or dates.

Office of the Reporter 2


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Sep 25 2014

Profile Image of Steven

The Training Season begins.

Filed under Lexis

Lexis Advance refreshed its look and platform as the new semester got underway this year. Many user-requested enhancements were added and Lexis is offering on-campus trainings and one-on-one sessions as well. To see all the upcoming dates available and to register, go to the Lexis Law school homepage and click on “Training at My School.”



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