Thomson Reuters Westlaw: the platform for US and International legal materials – main features

Thomson Reuters replaced their Westlaw International service with a more user-friendly platform which contains all material previously accessible through Westlaw International.

There are two libraries on this platform; one containing United States material, one containing international material.  You can navigate between the two libraries.

Access to Thomson Reuters Westlaw is still from Westlaw UK via Primo:

  1. Go to Primo and type Westlaw into the search box.
  2. Click on the blue link or on View Online, then log in to Westlaw UK with your university username and password.
  3. Click on the Services tab at the top of the Westlaw UK screen.
  4. Select International Materials – you will be taken to the International Materials Collection.

Search rules

You can search Thomson Reuters Westlaw in the same way as you search Westlaw UK:

  • Use AND (or &) and OR to link your search terms.
  • Enclose phrases in quotation marks “  ”.
  • Use the root expander ! to retrieve all possible endings to a root, eg. pollut! will look for pollution, pollutants, polluted.
  • Use connectors to specify the relationship between your search terms: you can ask Westlaw to look for your search terms to be in the same paragraph /p or sentence /s.  For example “environmental protection” /s regulat! will look for the phrase ‘environmental protection’ in the same sentence as regulation (or regulations or regulate).

Your searches during a session will be under History at the top right of the screen. History will display all documents opened and searches made.

US material

To access material from the US click on Thomson Reuters Westlaw at the top left or on the Home link. Use the browse option to navigate to different types of content from a number of collections.  The search option at the top of the screen searches across all collections of US material.

 

US Westlaw

For cases:

  • From the All Content menu open Cases. From there you can search for All Federal or All State Cases, search for Federal Cases by Court or Circuit, or search by State or other Jurisdictions. You can also search by Topic.
  • Open the advanced search option next to the search bar to perform a search with specific terms and/or to provide a date range, party names or citation. Notice the useful list of connectors and expanders on the right hand side.

For journals:

  • From the All content menu open Secondary Sources. From the Publication Type menu you can refine your search to Law Reviews and Journals. 
  • To better search Law Reviews and Journals click on advanced and enter your search terms in the search boxes like you do when you search Westlaw UK. For even better results, use connectors and phrase marks.

Note: Notice how the search box tab changes names depending on the collection your search is in.

International material

To search the international materials collection (includes Canada, EU, UK, Commonwealth, other jurisdictions) click on International Materials on the right hand side of the Thomson Reuters Westlaw home page.

Important links here: International Materials Index and World Journals (right hand side of screen).  Click on International Materials Index to browse individual titles and jurisdictions.

International Westlaw

For legislation and treaties:

  1. Go to the International Materials Index then click on International Legal Materials.
  2. Within the collection enter search terms in quotation marks.
  3. Search within results to narrow your search further

For all journals:

  1. Click on World Journals to see titles of all journals. This will include US.
  2. Click on a jurisdiction to see all journals listed for the country.

Document management

  • Click on the title to open a document and move around in it by using the arrows in the control panel.
  • You can change the font size, go to a specific section in the document, change the screen mode or click on the download arrow for email/print/download/send to Kindle options.
  • For more options and features and to increase your skills in using this new platform see Thomson Reuters’ own video: Introduction to Thomson Reuters Westlaw or read their user guides.

Remember to Sign Off!

If you have trouble using this database, please come and see us at the Taylor Library or contact:

Janet MacKay
T: 01224 273892
E: j.i.mackay@abdn.ac.uk

*******

Eleni Borompoka
Taylor Library

 

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