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Journal Subcite Tips: Cases & Dockets

Shortcuts for LSU Law Junior Associates.

R. 10 Cases


  • Grab PDF's of cases from Westlaw, where available (and permissible). For example, Federal Circuit court cases appearing in the F.3d (and prior), and Federal District court cases appearing in F. Supp. are the official versions of the cases according to the Bluebook and they're available on Westlaw. Many states desginate the West Regional Reporters as their official reporter, which are available in PDF on Westlaw as well. Remember to consult T.1 of the Bluebook for guidance on the official reporters for all U.S. jurisdictions.  
  • For U.S. Supreme Court decisions, grab cases from the U.S. Reports in HeinOnline.
  • If you have problems getting a PDF to open in Westlaw, switch browsers, e.g., from Firefox to Chrome. If that doesn’t work, you may get the PDF to open by holding down the 'Ctrl' button while clicking on the PDF icon – continue to hold 'Ctlr' while the PDF opens.
  • If no PDF is available through Westlaw, you may need to use a different database, a book, or interlibrary loan to get a citable version of your case. When in doubt, ask for help.

R. 10.8.3 Briefs, Court Filings, and Transcripts

Docket Materials

  • Get docket materials on Bloomberg Law. Bloomberg harvests PACER materials and also has a limited collection of state dockets. If you don't have a Bloomberg account, visit the Reference Desk.
  • PACER, the Federal docket system, is also available to students at the law library's Reference Desk.

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