Finals are over! Congrats! Now that “summer” is here, it’s time to answer a question that I get often throughout the school year. Can students use Westlaw or Lexis during their summer work? The answer is that it depends. Each legal research vendor has its own policies on what summer accounts can be used for during the summer. These rules have relaxed quite a bit over the last few years, so many of you will be able to use at least some of your student accounts for research this summer.
With that said, let me make a plug for not always using your student account. Let’s say you’re working for a small firm that you’d like to work for after graduation that only uses Casemaker. Casemaker is a Utah Bar member benefit, so Utah attorneys have access to it for “free.” Using your Westlaw or Lexis student account isn’t going to give you the practice you need to perform the research on Casemaker that you’ll have to do if you get hired. Just a thought.
Lexis Advance – Student accounts can be used for any type of research this summer.
Bloomberg Law – Student accounts can be used for any type of research this summer.
WestlawNext – Student accounts can be extended over the summer for summer classes, law review and journal work, projects for a professor, Moot Court, and unpaid externships for school credit. The caveat to externships is that you can’t use your student account if the firm is going to bill your client for the research that you’re performing. To extend your password and see a more detailed explanation of when your student account can be used, see this page (you’ll have to sign in first). Contact our Westlaw rep, Jeff Brandimarte (firstname.lastname@example.org) with further questions.
I’ll post more soon about ways the library can help over the summer.