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Sharpening Your Information Skills for Legal Placement

A guide to accompany LW4612 Legal Placement and LW5612 Legal Placement

Did you have these problems?

  • The exact spelling of the case name is not known. After trying all possibilities, you still cannot locate it.
  • The keywords you use either retrieve too little or too many results, or sometimes totally irrelevant results.

How to improve case law research?

  • Before entering search terms, select the appropriate field first.
  • Correct field for party name: Case Name (Lexis), Party Names (Westlaw)
  • Correct field for fact of case: Catchwords/Headnotes (Lexis), Subject/Catchword (Westlaw)
  • Proper use of search connectors.

Search connectors help you define the relationship between the search terms so as to improve the precision and relevance of the results.

  • And  = Search terms in the same document.
  • Or = Either search term or both in the same document.
  • " " = Search terms inside the quotation marks to appear in the document as a phrase.
  • /s = Search terms in the same sentence.
  • /p  = Search terms in the same paragraph.
  • /n  = Search terms within "n" terms of each other, "n" being a numeric value.
  • Truncation mark !  = To retrieve any term starting with the root term.

Consult these search guides to learn more about search connectors:

Lexis Advance Hong Kong guide

Westlaw Asia guide

Applying search connectors to case law research - examples

  • When you don't have the complete/exact case names, try using the truncation symbol "!".

By entering this search string: Int! and Translink

You will get this case: Italia Maritime Spa v Translink Shipping (HK) Ltd.

  • To look for cases related to breach of director's duty causing losses, try this search string.

In the subject or catchword field, enter: director /5 duty

In the free text field, enter: loss!