Beginning today, July 1, 2009, Wisconsin attorneys must electronically file a copy of all appellate briefs, no-merit reports, petitions for review, and responses. For more on these requirements, see Mandatory appellate e-filing begins July 1, 2009 in InsideTrack from the State Bar of Wisconsin.
One thing that the article doesn’t mention is that attorneys may include links to cases or statutes cited in their briefs, as long as the source is free. For the full rule, see page five of the Supreme Court Rules regarding electronic filing of documents per the Wisconsin’s Court Systems eFiling page. It reads:
Electronic briefs may be enhanced with internal links (such as a table of contents with links to locations in the brief) or external links (links to websites containing the text of cases or statutes cited in the brief). External links in an electronic brief shall not require a password for access to the case or statute. No enhancement to an electronic brief shall alter the text of the brief.
If you’d like to add such links to your briefs but aren’t sure how to find them, I recommend giving Jureeka! a try.
A few months ago I blogged about Jureeka!, noting that it is a Firefox add-on that looks for legal citations in ordinary web pages and turns them into hyperlinks that lead to a free version of the cited source. Pretty handy for web-based research.
But Jureeka! also installs a toolbar in Firefox which allows you to search for source material by legal citation. See the screen shot below.
After you enter in your citation and click “Find by citation” you’ll be directed to a page that offers you a link to your desired document, if it is available.
Once you reach the desired website with your source, simply copy the URL at the top and paste into your brief.
Jureeka! is great for quickly locating links to statutes, case law, regulations, federal court rules, international law sources, and more. It has a success rate of around 92%.
For more about this neat tool, including a list of citation types included, see the Jureeka! blog.
Thanks to my colleague, Lynne Gehrke, for helping me recognize this new use for Jureeka!