Sunday, February 3, 2013

A new open source outlet for federal court decisions

The U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO) and the Administrative Office of the United States Courts (AOUSC) have together launched a beta website devoted to providing open access to federal court opinions called United States Court Opinions.  At present, the database is pretty limited including only decisions from the Second, Eighth and Ten Circuits back through April 2004 as well as a limited number of federal district and bankruptcy court opinions (click here and here for the respective lists). Opinions are downloadable in pdf format and once you locate an opinion all the decisions associated with that particular case can be accessed from the same folder.  It remains to be seen to what extent the government will expand the databases to include all federal courts so for the time being perhaps you'll want to let your students know about it and then keep an eye peeled to see whether it develops into a more substantial resource.

Hat tip to Legal Research Plus.


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