My firm is Lisa Solomon, Esq. Legal Research & Writing. I do legal research and writing for other lawyers on a freelance basis, helping primarily with appeal briefs and dispositive motions.
As someone whose career depends on legal research and writing – that's all I do – I need to have everything optimized. I like WestlawNext because it brings tools like KeyCite and the Key Number System to the forefront. Of course, I used those tools on Westlaw Classic, but WestlawNext makes it a lot easier and more convenient to use them. And easily implemented search filters, which are new in WestlawNext, are another great way to quickly find the most relevant cases.
Hear what Lisa says about WestlawNext.
Because lawyers know that legal research is so important to me, they often ask me about what legal research product they should use. I recommend WestlawNext because it's the best technology.
WestlawNext will make anyone more efficient. Whether you're a new or experienced attorney, one of your goals is always to be the most efficient for your client, while still providing a high-quality result.
I think that a lot of solos and small firms try to save money by going with less than the best online legal research tools. I just wouldn't trust any of the lower-priced or free resources, for a number of reasons. One is that you really need a research system with a good citator to know whether your case is good law or not. And so I would not rely on any system that didn't have a citator, and that pretty much knocks almost everything else out of the running right there. Also, you just can't get the depth of secondary content that West has.
In addition to running a solo legal practice, I'm a blogger, an entrepreneur, a mom of two, a wife, and a mushroom hunter. I love mushroom hunting because it gets me out in nature. With my job, I'm in front of the computer screen all day. And though I love my job, it is important to get out and spend time with close friends, doing something that we all enjoy.
There are some similarities between mushroom hunting and the legal research work that I do. With mushroom hunting, you're looking in the woods for interesting mushrooms. With legal research, you're looking through thousands of cases for the ones that are of interest to you. So when you find an interesting mushroom – maybe one that you haven't seen before – or the one case that's going to really nail it, it's a good feeling!
My clients trust me to do complete and accurate legal research. I trust WestlawNext because West has been a leader in legal publishing for so long. I've read law review articles comparing the West Key Number System to other indexing systems, and West always comes out ahead. Since Key Numbers are one of the tools that I use in my research process, I wouldn't consider using any research platform that doesn't have them.