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Features - Web Guide to U.S. Supreme Court Research

By Gail Partin, Published on December 22, 2003

 

Gail A. Partin is an Associate Law Librarian in the Sheely-Lee Law Library at Penn State’s Dickinson School of Law. Her primary responsibility is providing legal research instruction and reference services. As the library's Foreign, Comparative, and International Law Librarian, she is also responsible for the development and maintenance of the library's international law collection. Gail has conducted numerous educational seminars on legal research instruction and Internet legal research. She also maintains the Dickinson Legal Research Resources website for her library and publishes the International Criminal Law chapter of the ASIL Guide to Electronic Resources for International Law. She is an active member of AALL’s Foreign, Comparative & International Law SIS and the Research Instruction & Patron Services SIS.

 

Introduction

Researchers around the globe are demanding up-to-the-minute information on events at the United States Supreme Court. Whether it is for a college or law school seminar, an appellate brief, or a certiorari petition to the Court itself, the Internet plays a central role in delivering this information. The Web is fast, convenient and, for U.S. Supreme Court information, becoming more comprehensive and reliable every day.

The Web Guide to U.S. Supreme Court Research is intended to facilitate the convenience and speed that we expect when turning to the Internet for our research needs. Often, we are unimpressed by the performance of search engines primarily because of problems with the quantity or relevancy of the results. This Web Guide attempts to overcome the shortcomings of general web searching by providing a selection of annotated links to the most reliable, substantive sites for U.S. Supreme Court research. The sites mentioned here focus predominantly on information that is freely, or inexpensively, available on the Internet.

Table of Contents

Introduction
U.S. Supreme Court Sites
Official Supreme Court Sites
Other Supreme Court Sites
Supreme Court Cases
Opinions
Case Summaries
Briefs
Oral Arguments
Court Docket
Justices of the U.S. Supreme Court
News & Current Awareness
Supreme Court Practice
Court Administration
News & Current Awareness
Supreme Court History
Research Guides
Focus on the Issues

U.S. Supreme Court Sites

Supreme Court of the United States

This is the official web site of the United States Supreme Court. Despite being a relative newcomer to the technology scene (the site was only recently unveiled in 2000), the Court has developed a robust tool for disseminating information. The site provides information about the Court, the justices, Court opinions, Court calendars, practice before the Court, and visits to the Court. Some exciting new features include an automated docket system, access to briefs on the merits for cases awaiting argument, availability of recent opinions within hours of the decision, and the availability (in PDF format) of the complete text of bound volumes of United States Reports. These features and more are described more thoroughly in specific sections of this Web Guide.

Other Supreme Court Sites

Legal Information Institute (LII)
Since its inception in 1992, Cornell Law School’s Legal Information Institute has firmly secured a reputation as an excellent web site for legal information. The LII’s Supreme Court coverage contributes to that distinguished status with the inclusion of searchable collections of Court opinions, a topically arranged list of case summaries for the current term (http://supct.law.cornell.edu/supct/03highlts.html), rules, orders, biographical information on the justices, and more. An added feature is the free current awareness service, LII-bulletin (http://www.law.cornell.edu/focus/bulletins.html), that distributes syllabi of Court decisions via e-mail within hours after their release.

FindLaw
Originally launched in 1996 and merged with Thompson/West in 2001, Findlaw continues to be a premier Internet site for legal information. The U.S. Supreme Court page is no exception. It is a comprehensive source for Court information. Court decisions back to 1893 are searchable by name, keyword, date and citation. Docket information for the current and previous terms includes links to case summaries, decisions of lower courts, and briefs where available. Other Court resources include biographical information on the justices, Court calendars, Court history, orders, court rules, and filing guides. An especially useful feature is a free email newsletter containing case summaries as they are handed down.

Supreme Court Monitor
American Lawyer Media's Law.com provides this information service covering news, oral arguments, orders, and other events at the U.S. Supreme Court. It covers four main areas: news, commentary, decisions, and cert. granted. The News and Commentary sections contain stories on the current court term taken from American Lawyer Media publications. The Decisions section contains summaries of cases decided by the Court since the 1999-2000 term. Cases are arranged by term or by subject. The Cert. Granted section gathers information on pending cases and is arranged by argument date and subject.


Supreme Court Cases

Opinions

Supreme Court of the United States Official Web Site

Slip Opinions
Slip opinions are posted on this Website within hours after the bench opinions. They are issued in PDF format and remain posted until the opinions are published in a bound volume of the United States Reports. Currently coverage includes the most recent three Court terms.

United States Reports bound volumes
The full text is available in PDF format from cover through index, starting with bound volumes 502 et seq., and including all of the opinions, orders, and other materials issued for the Court's 1991 Term and subsequent years. Additional volumes will be added here after they are published in print form.

Information About Opinions
The Supreme Court's opinions and related materials are disseminated to the public by means of four printed publications and two computerized services. This publication describes the Court’s publication process.

Where to Obtain Supreme Court Opinions (August 2003) http://www.supremecourtus.gov/opinions/obtainopinions.pdf 
This publication “was compiled, and is updated annually, by the staff of the Supreme Court for use by the Court and the public. It is intended to be as complete as possible and includes every opinion issuer of which the staff is aware.” It contains contact information for publishers of print and electronic opinions.

Slip Lists -  http://www.supremecourtus.gov/opinions/sliplists.html 
Counsel Listings -  http://www.supremecourtus.gov/opinions/counsellist.html 
Case Citation Finder -  http://www.supremecourtus.gov/opinions/casefinder.html
Dates of Early Supreme Court Decisions, 2 Dall through 107 U.S. (PDF)
http://www.supremecourtus.gov/opinions/datesofdecisions.pdf 

Other Finding Aids

FindLaw
This is FindLaw's searchable database of Supreme Court decisions since 1893 (U.S. Reports, vol. 150- ). It is browsable by year and U.S. Reports volume number and searchable by citation, case title and full text. It also includes recent decisions from the current term.

FLITE (Federal Legal Information Through Electronics)
This system contains the full text of 7,407 U.S. Supreme Court Decisions from 1937 to 1975. Two search options are provided: search the full text of decisions by key word or search by party name. It can be accessed through the FedWorld.gov gateway to government information.

lexisONE
This is one of the few places on the Internet to retrieve full-text United States Supreme Court cases for free in its entirety, dating back to 1790. Cases are searchable by citation and keyword, and users have the option of restricting their search by date, parties, judges and counsel. Full display of the text requires registration with lexisONE (a free service).

Legal Information Institute (LII)
LII maintains Supreme Court decisions in two collections:

  • Project Hermes: The Court began distributing decisions electronically under the auspices of Project Hermes in 1990. Opinions can be searched by topic, author, or party name.
  • Historic Decisions: This collection currently consists of over 600 of the Court's most important decisions from the founding of the court to the present. LII provides a variety of finding aids with this collection, including lists of cases by opinion author, party name, and topic.
  • Highlights of the Current Term: Cases ruled on during the current term are arranged by topic and briefly described. The descriptions provide links to the full opinion, previous opinions, merits briefs, amicus briefs, motions, arguments, articles & commentary, and more related references.
  • Searching Decisions by Topic
    Decisions can be searched by choosing any of the 100+ subjects listed here. This set of topic links actually works by executing a search of the syllabi (case summaries) for related key terms.
  • Keyword Searching
    Keyword searches can be performed directly in either the syllabi or the full opinions. A search can also be done with words in a case name (or year or docket number) or opinion author.

    Detailed information about the LII’s collections of decisions can be found at http://supct.law.cornell.edu/supct/supremes.htm. This explanation describes coverage, content, and search strategy.

Supreme Court Monitor

Summaries of cases decided by the Court since the 1999-2000 term are available. Full text decisions are linked from the case summaries and are available at no charge back to the 2000-2001 term. Cases are arranged by term or by practice area.

Summaries of cases decided by the Court since the 1999-2000 term are available. Full text decisions are linked from the case summaries and are available at no charge back to the 2000-2001 term. Cases are arranged by term or by practice area.

USSC Plus
USSC+ is a subscription service providing Supreme Court cases from 1879 to the present; 21,699 cases online (or on CD-ROM). Opinions from the current term are free at http://www.usscplus.com/current/, as is the USSC+ Express Email Digest Service, which provides new opinions within hours of their being handed down.

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Case Summaries

Preview of the United States Supreme Court Cases

Preview is comprised of concise analyses prior to oral argument of every case granted plenary review by the Court. The full text version is available by subscription from the ABA. This web site provides free access to shorter summaries of every case listed for oral argument since the 1999 term via the collections listed below. To facilitate research, the Preview site is keyword searchable, including party name.

Cases at a Glance (http://www.abanet.org/publiced/preview/previewcaseglancehome.html) offers an advance look at the issues raised in every case slated for oral argument since the 1999 term. Links connect to the full text of the Court's decisions as soon as they are handed down.

Case Summaries (http://www.abanet.org/publiced/preview/sumhome.html) are compiled each summer by identifying the key rulings from every Supreme Court decision handed down throughout the term. These case highlights are then used to arrange the Summaries by topical area. In addition to key rulings, each summary includes the vote breakdown and an excerpt from the majority or plurality opinion.

Cases of Interest to the School Community (http://www.abanet.org/publiced/preview/school/home.html) highlight cases from the recent term in subject areas such as constitutional rights and education law. These summaries provide more information and related resources to meet the needs of the academic community.

Featured Cases (http://www.abanet.org/publiced/preview/features/home.html) are analyses of the issues provided by experts prior to oral argument. These are cases selected for their importance, and excerpted from the full version of Preview.

On the Docket
Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism provides these summaries of cases on the Supreme Court’s docket in partnership with the Oyez Project. The summaries, dating back to the 1998-1999 term, are arranged by issue/subject matter for easy topic searching.

LII-bulletin
This is “a free current awareness service via E-mail, distributing the syllabi of U.S. Supreme Court decisions in bulletin format within hours after their release.” These are not the decisions themselves nor excerpts from them, but summaries (syllabi) prepared by the Court's Reporter of Decisions.

Willamette Law Online
Willamette Law Online “provides same-day summaries of certiorari granted, oral arguments, and decisions published by the United States Supreme Court.” It functions as a notification system, and as such is not intended to be a substitute for in depth research. “The certiorari summaries focus on the facts and decision from the lower court. The week prior to oral arguments [the service] provides an outline of the issues presented to the Court as argued in the briefs. The decision summaries provide the holding from the United States Supreme Court and a brief overview of the Court's reasoning.” Cases are categorized by year and coverage starts with the 2001-2002 term. Each summary links to the full text of Supreme Court and lower court decisions via Findlaw. A free email subscription can be obtained by registering at http://lists.willamette.edu/mailman/listinfo/wlo-ussc/.

Supreme Court Monitor
The Cert. Granted section gathers information on and provides case summaries for pending cases. Cases are arranged by scheduled argument date and by practice area.

Appellate.Net
This service is provided by the nation’s oldest and largest Supreme Court and Appellate Practice Group, Mayer, Brown, Rowe & Maw, LLP. The site collects information, news, and links relevant to Supreme Court and appellate practice, as well as oral arguments and articles about cases or issues handled by the firm in recent years. The site includes a newsletter, Supreme Court Docket Reports, which describes all cases of interest to the business community in which the Supreme Court grants certiorari.

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Briefs

Supreme Court of the United States Official Web Site
To access briefs choose the link to On-Line MERITS BRIEFS, which connects to Preview of United States Supreme Court Cases (http://www.abanet.org/publiced/preview/briefs/home.html) on ABAnet (American Bar Association web site). Coverage includes merits briefs (less amici curiae briefs and joint appendices) filed in cases slated for oral argument. Briefs may be accessed either by argument date or case name.

Where To Find Briefs of the Supreme Court of the U.S. (October 2003, rev.) - http://supremecourtus.gov/oral_arguments/briefsource.pdf, is a Court publication that describes a variety of sources for obtaining briefs, including complete contact information for document retrieval services, brief depositories, and the Court’s self-service program.

FindLaw: Supreme Court Briefs
Selected party and amicus briefs are available in PDF format for cases granted certiorari from 1999 - present. The briefs are organized by term and alphabetically by first-party case name.

Office of the Solicitor General (OSG)
This site provides access to briefs (other than responses in "in forma pauperis" (IFP) cases) filed by the Solicitor General. Coverage (http://www.usdoj.gov/osg/briefs/help.html#coverage) includes selected briefs from 1982-1996 and all filings (except IFP) since July, 1998. Briefs are grouped by the Supreme Court term during which they are filed and are searchable by keyword, type, or subject.

Briefserve
Coverage includes briefs from the 1984 term to the present. The Brieflist provides the filing date, a brief description of the document, and an abstract of the case. The database is searchable by keyword, case name, or docket number. Briefs are delivered in PDF format. The cost is $25.00 per brief with a minimum order of two documents. The page also provides links to the Court's website for Court calendars, Cert. Granted cases, Court opinions, Court rules, forms and guidelines.

Yale University - Curiae Project
The Curiae Project provides records and briefs and other relevant materials for selected, highly cited, U.S. Supreme Court cases. “Cases are selected for addition to the site based on a ranking developed from citation data in historical and constitutional texts.” Examples include commonly cited cases such as, Marbury vs. Madison (1803), Gibbons v. Ogden (1824), and Brown v. Board of Education I (1954) and II (1955). Briefs for over 1000 cases are available. All briefs are available in PDF format.

Taming the Knee-jerk Reaction: Locating U.S. Supreme Court Briefs by Diane D'Angelo, Reference Librarian (December 2001) at http://www.law.suffolk.edu/library/newsletter/01dec/01dec5.html.
 

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Oral Arguments

Oyez Project: U.S. Supreme Court Multimedia Database
The Oyez Project’s most noteworthy contribution is certainly its collection of digital audio files of Supreme Court oral arguments. Cases are arranged by subject, each accompanied by an abstract of the decision, links to audio files of oral arguments and oral opinions, participation levels of each justice, and links to the full text opinion. Users can search by case name, citation, subject or date. The site also has links to Supreme Court opinions, biographies and portraits of Justices, voting records, digital recordings of speeches by justices, and a "virtual tour" of the Supreme Court Building.

In June, 2003 the Oyez Project, working in conjunction with the Creative Commons organization, released the first of several sets of Supreme Court oral audio files in MP3 format. The license allows listeners to download, share, and create derivative works using these audio files.

Supreme Court of the United States Official Web Site
The Court provides transcripts of oral arguments that are posted on this Website within 10-15 business days after the close of the argument session. This site is the permanent archive for transcripts and includes the cases argued during October Term 2000 and subsequent Court Terms. Transcripts are listed by argument date/session, then by docket number.

Transcripts of cases more recent than those posted here can be purchased from Alderson Reporting Company at (202) 289-2260, or www.aldersonreporting.com.

Transcripts and Recordings of Oral Arguments (October 2003)
http://www.supremecourtus.gov/oral_arguments/availabilityoforalargumenttranscripts.pdf is a Court publication that explains the process for recording and transcription of oral arguments. It describes sources for print, electronic, CD-ROM, and microform transcripts.

The Supreme Court Enters the Internet Age: The Court and Technology by Roy M. Mersky and Kumar Percy (June 1, 2000)
This article describes the evolution of the Court’s policies on the use of technology to access opinions and arguments. Especially interesting is the description of the circumstances leading to the Court’s shift in policy and the role played by Peter Irons and Stephanie Guitton, editors of the groundbreaking audio publication, May it please the court : the most significant oral arguments made before the Supreme Court since 1955, recordings of historic arguments on six cassettes.

Court Docket, Order Lists & Calendar

Supreme Court of the United States Official Web Site

Calendars

This page provides the Court schedule, Court calendar, argument calendars, day call, hearing lists, and the granted/noted cases lists for the two most recent terms.

 

Order Lists
Court orders since October Term 2000 are available.

Automated Docket System
The automated docket system is the Court's case tracking system. It contains information about cases, both pending and decided, for both the current Term and the prior Term. Users can search for cases by using a Supreme Court docket number, a lower court docket number, or a case name. Information on the docket is updated on the day after an entry is made on the docket.

Oyez: The Pending Docket

This is a listing of all Supreme Court cases that have been argued, but not decided nor reargued. It is arranged chronologically by argument date and provides a case abstract which eventually links to audio files, full text opinions and other resources.

Legal Information Institute (LII)
The LII site provides comprehensive coverage of docket and calendar information. Under Current Awareness in the left column of the LII Home Page, there are headings for “Case updates…” and “Orders…” each of which displays a menu of links from which to choose.  “Case updates” leads to separate pages for:


· Cases pending oral argument (http://supct.law.cornell.edu/supct/oral_arg_calendar.php)
· Cases argued this term (http://supct.law.cornell.edu/supct/oral_arg_calendar.php?begin=20011001&end=2002063)
· Supreme Court calendar (PDF) (http://supct.law.cornell.edu/supct/oral_arg_calendar)

“Orders” leads to separate pages for:
· Orders this month (http://supct.law.cornell.edu/supct/orderlists.php)
· Searching the database of the Court’s Order Lists by party name, date, or docket number http://supct.law.cornell.edu/supct/orderinquiry.php 

FindLaw
Docket information is available for the current and previous terms and includes questions presented, case summaries, decisions of lower courts, and briefs. Cases can be browsed by month. Court calendars and order lists are available back to the 1998 term and include orders in pending cases, grants and denials of certiorari, mandamus, and rehearings, and attorney discipline orders.

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Justices of the U.S. Supreme Court

Supreme Court of the United States Official Web Site

Biographies of the Current Justices  - http://www.supremecourtus.gov/about/biographiescurrent.pdf 
Speeches - http://www.supremecourtus.gov/publicinfo/speeches/speeches.html 
Members of the Court (1789 to present) - http://www.supremecourtus.gov/about/members.pdf 
The Justices Caseload -  http://www.supremecourtus.gov/about/justicecaseload.pdf 
Circuit Assignment of Justices -  http://www.supremecourtus.gov/about/allotment.pdf 

The Supreme Court: Research Guide and Bibliography by Gail A. Partin (updated annually, each Spring).
This site contains two separate bibliographies covering information on the justices:
· Current Justices Bibliography: compilation of citation information for articles, books, media and microform resources written by or about each of the current justices on the Court. Entries include transcripts of nomination hearings, videotaped interviews, periodical and magazine articles, news stories, and books.
· Former Justices Bibliography: Bibliographies for justices that have recently departed from the Court are provided here. Although these bibliographies have not been extensively updated since the date that each justice left the Court, they are still quite useful for locating historical information.

Oyez: Justices
This page supplies pictures and biographical information for all of the justices back to 1789. It includes background and biographical information, other resources, and links to every opinion written by the justice.

Legal Information Institute (LII) - Gallery of Justices
This page provides a photograph, biographical information, and links to judicial opinions written by each of the current justice.

FindLaw: Supreme Court Justices
Extensive biographical information is provided for current and past justices. Brief summaries are linked to more extensive biographies, which, in turn, link to related biographical sources such as newspapers, encyclopedias, and other judicial or Supreme Court web sites.

Louis D. Brandeis collection - http://library.louisville.edu/law/brandeis/ 
John Marshall Harlan Collection - http://www.louisville.edu/library/law/harlan/ 
The University of Louisville School of Law Library holds the papers of both of these Supreme Court justices. The Library has indexed and cataloged the collections and provided searchable guides to the public on their web site. Contact information is available for interlibrary loan requests.
 

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News & Commentary

Washington Post
The Washington Post maintains a separate news page for U.S. Supreme Court issues, highlighting key articles and cases back to 1996. The page also includes a section on Cases To Watch in the current term and links to Supreme Court quizzes for 2001-2003.

Full Court Press, by Charles Lane, reports on news and trends inside the Supreme Court on the first Monday of every month. Columns online date back to 1999.

Supreme Court Monitor
The News and Commentary sections contain stories on the current court term taken from American Lawyer Media publications. Summaries of articles are arranged chronologically, with links to the full story. News wire content can be searched for the previous six months (http://store.law.com/newswire_search.asp ), although a subscription is required to read the full text of these articles.

Jurist
Includes stories from major national newspapers and commentary from legal scholars.

C-SPAN: Judiciary Resources
This site provides links to resources about the Supreme Court, along with video and audio clips of Q&A Sessions with Justices and Profiles of Justices. The link to the C-SPAN series, America and the Courts, also provides video clips of interviews, speeches, and conferences involving the justices or the Court. Media player software is required to run the clips and downloading can be cumbersome due to the large size of some files. However, when the download is successful, the quality of sound, picture, and content are worth the effort.

CNN: Law/SCOTUS
Coverage of Supreme Court issues and newsworthy cases extends back to early August, 2003. A site search engine, powered by Google, is available for locating older articles. A sample search for U.S. Supreme Court yielded over 800 stories dating back to 1995.

Yahoo News Full Coverage - Supreme Court News
Includes feature articles, opinions & editorials, and news stories from a variety of national news sources. The Supreme Court News Archive offers older articles back to 1998.

USA Today
Using the site search feature seems to be the most efficient method of retrieving stories on the Court. Articles are archived back to 1998.


Supreme Court Practice

U.S. Supreme Court Official Web Site

Supreme Court Rules of Court
This is the most recent revision to the Rules of the Supreme Court of the United States. Included here are the full set of rules and a publication explaining the most recent revisions.

 

Case Handling Guides
Guides are available in PDF format for filing paid cases, for filing in forma pauperis cases, and for counsel in cases to be argued.

Bar Admission Instructions & Forms

The Court and Its Procedures

Legal Information Institute (LII)
The most recent version of the Supreme Court Rules is up-to-date and searchable in its PDF format. This site also provides the text of constitutional provisions establishing the court, statutory clauses pertaining to the Court’s jurisdiction and organization.
 

 

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Court Administration

U.S. Supreme Court Official Web Site

Chief Justice’s Year End Reports of the Federal Judiciary (2000-present)

 

The Justices Caseload

Circuit Assignment of Justices

The Court and Its Procedures

Public Information
This page includes press releases, media advisories, career opportunities, fellowships, externships, volunteer opportunities, speeches by the justices since May 2000 (http://www.supremecourtus.gov/publicinfo/speeches/speeches.html), and information on the Supreme Court Building Modernization Project (http://www.supremecourtus.gov/publicinfo/modernization/home.htm).


The Supreme Court Enters the Internet Age: The Court and Technology by Roy M. Mersky and Kumar Percy (June 1, 200).

The Third Branch: the Newsletter of the Federal Courts


Supreme Court History

U.S. Supreme Court Official Web Site

A Brief Overview of the Supreme Court

Visiting the Court
This page on the Court’s web site includes information pertaining to the services available to visitors. It also includes a visitor’s guide to the supreme court, a visitor’s guide to oral argument, a brief history of the building, architectural information, and a collection of building photographs.

 

The Court as an Institution

The Court and Its Traditions

The Court and Constitutional Interpretation

Supreme Court Historical Society
“The Supreme Court Historical Society is dedicated to the preservation and dissemination of the history of the Supreme Court of the United States” through a variety of educational programs, lecture series, publications and this web site. The website includes the following features:

Historical Features
These high quality video clips cover specific themes or eras in the Court’s history. For example, a recent feature clip was, FDR & the Court Packing Controversy.

Timeline of the Justices
Brief biography and photograph of each former justice.

The Current Court
Brief biography and photograph of each sitting justice.

History of the Court
Summarizes the events and highlights of the Court under each Chief Justice beginning with the Jay Court in 1789 through the current Rehnquist Court.

Homes of the Court
An historical review of the various locations and buildings where the Court presided since its inception.

Court History Quizzes
Four short quizzes, with answers provided, written by James B. O’Hara.

Oyez: On This Day in History
This page provides information about what occurred at the U.S. Supreme Court on a particular day in the past.

Oyez Virtual Tour of the Supreme Court Building

Architect of the Capitol: The Old Supreme Court Chamber
The Old Supreme Court Chamber is the first room constructed for the use of the nation's highest judicial body. This page contains the history of the building including interior photographs.

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Research Guides

The Supreme Court: Research Guide and Bibliography by Gail A. Partin (updated annually each Spring).
This site contains three separate publications:
· Research Guide: identifies print and electronic resources that facilitate Supreme Court research.
· Current Justices Bibliography: compilation of citation information for articles, books, media and microform resources written by or about each of the current justices on the Court. Entries include transcripts of nomination hearings, videotaped interviews, periodical and magazine articles, news stories, and books.
· Former Justices Bibliography: Bibliographies for justices that have recently departed from the Court are provided here. Although these bibliographies have not been extensively updated since the date that each justice left the Court, they are still quite useful for locating historical information.

Jurist
The Supreme Court page provides a bibliography of links to news, scholarly commentary, opinions, oral arguments, the Court’s docket, information about the justices, and more.

Researching the Supreme Court of the United States by Jill Ann Duffy and Elizabeth Ardella Laub Lambert (2000).

October 2000 Supreme Court Term: What’s New on the Internet by Roger V. Skalbeck (November 15, 2000).

U.S. Supreme Court Research - Select Internet Sites by Elizabeth Lambert (May 15, 2002).

Zimmerman’s Research Guide: United States Supreme Court
This is a practical guide to finding Supreme Court materials either in print or online.

Focus on the Issues

Many Supreme Court watchers choose to monitor specific issues as they unfold. This section focuses on broad topics that regularly arise in the Supreme Court. There are a plethora of subject-specific web pages spotlighting constitutional or Supreme Court matters, so this listing is, and will remain, extremely selective. The two major criteria for inclusion here are that these web sites must objectively present their materials and exhibit no signs of bias.

FindLaw: Hot Topics
Findlaw provides scholarly articles, commentary, and brief reviews of issues that remain at the forefront of Supreme Court developments. Areas spotlighted are:

Abortion
Bill of Rights - First Amendment
Bill of Rights - Fourth Amendment
Bill of Rights - Fifth Amendment
Bill of Rights - Eighth Amendment
Civil Rights / Discrimination
Criminal Law / Procedure
Elections
Federal Agencies
Federalism
Immigration
Supremacy Clause
Supreme Court

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Criminal Law

Criminal Law Decisions since the 1998-1999 Term
Decisions from 1998 to the present are arranged by subject and/or constitutional amendment.

Criminal Law and Procedure Decisions of the October 2000-2001 Supreme Court Term by Solomon L. Wisenberg of Ross, Dixon & Bell, L.L.P at http://sol.lp.findlaw.com/all.html. Separate articles cover the 1998-1999 and 1999-2000 terms as well.

Education Law

Preview: Cases of Interest to the School Community
This site highlights cases from the recent term in subject areas such as constitutional rights and education law. The summaries provide more information and related resources to meet the needs of the academic community.

First Amendment

First Amendment Center
The First Amendment Center is an operating program of the Freedom Forum and is affiliated with the Newseum and with Vanderbilt University through the Vanderbilt Institute for Public Policy Studies. The Center’s web site features “comprehensive research coverage of key First Amendment issues and topics, a unique First Amendment Library and guest analyses by respected legal specialists.”

1st Amendment Online
This web site, based at the University of Minnesota Law School, is “dedicated to publicly accessible information, ideas, and images concerning the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.” It contains academic materials, First Amendment cases, news, primary sources, historical materials, and public opinion polls relating to First Amendment issues.

Religious Liberty
The Establishment "Claus": A Selective Guide to the Supreme Court's Christmas Cases by Stephen Young. (December 16, 2002). This Guide outlines the Court’s decisions that have focused on the public display of symbols of the Christmas holiday season.

Intellectual Property

Internet Library of Law and Court Decisions
The Internet Law Library, authored by Martin H. Samson, a partner at Phillips Nizer LLP, “features extensive summaries of over 310 court decisions shaping the law of the web; providing facts, analysis and pertinent quotes from cases of interest to those involved in New Media addressing copyright, trademark, dilution and other intellectual property issues, jurisdiction, linking, framing, meta tags, clip-art, defamation, domain name, e-mail, encryption, gambling, click-wrap agreements, shrink-wrap licenses, spamming and other subjects.” The site provides brief synopses of court decisions, indexed alphabetically by subject matter. Click on the case title for a more thorough analysis of the court's decision, and, where available, its full text. The site can also be searched via a full text search engine.

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