For Immediate Release
CONTACT: Kenneth Brown
SUBJECT: Revolution in online legal research comes to Michigan
(COLUMBUS, OHIO, Dec. 3, 2001) -- Lawyers in Michigan can now join those in Ohio, Nebraska, North Carolina and Connecticut in using Casemaker, a revolutionary online legal research tool. Michigan lawyers are being offered a free “sneak preview” of Casemaker. The Ohio State Bar Association and the Casemaker Consortium of state bar associations hope to develop a relationship with the State Bar of Michigan that would make Casemaker a permanent no-extra-charge member service .
Michigan lawyers can take advantage of this six-month free Casemaker trial by logging onto www.casemaker.ohiobar.org. Upon entering the site, each attorney is assigned a password providing unlimited access with no obligation.
Casemaker is a unique online legal online research tool with a powerful combination of state and federal materials that was pioneered by the Ohio State Bar Association and is changing the way many lawyers conduct legal research. It provides comprehensive, up-to-date materials in an easy-to-use, fully-searchable format.
Casemaker is changing the face of online legal research across the country. It brings a free to bar members online legal research option to lawyers, leveling the playing field for solo practitioners and smaller firms who might not otherwise be able to afford traditional online legal research services.
Casemaker provides a strong focus on Michigan resources, including: Michigan Supreme Court Opinions and Appellate Court Opinions from 1930-present, Michigan Attorney General Opinions from 1977-present, Michigan Compiled Laws, and features federal and other state libraries as well. Unlike most other legal references sites on the Internet, the Casemaker web library is updated weekly to keep references current. Similar libraries are included on Casemaker for Ohio, Nebraska, North Carolina and Connecticut. “For many lawyers in these states, Casemaker® can fulfill most if not all of their computer-assisted online legal research needs,” said OSBA Executive Director Denny L. Ramey. “For some practitioners, Casemaker® augments other online legal research tools. Current Casemaker Consortium members offer the service free-of-charge to their members. Casemaker® is a cost saver -- a benefit for practice management and potentially for consumers of legal services.”
Ramey continued, “With an average per minute cost of $4.50 for other online legal research tools, Casemaker users and their clients are saving millions in online legal research costs. Casemaker also saves time in conducting legal research, another cost saver for all concerned parties.”
According to OSBA President Mary Jane Trapp, partnering with other state bar associations benefits both association members and the public. “Each time the OSBA signs a contract with another state bar association, we expand the resources available to our Consortium and their members,” Trapp said. “For the public, this service means significant savings in legal research fees, an expense which clients ultimately bear.” Each state’s case information will be available to other subscribers as additional bar associations opt to work with the OSBA and Lawriter. As other states join, the federal law coverage will also continue to grow for the use of all member bar associations.
The OSBA will continue efforts to bring additional states into the Casemaker Consortium, with the goal of eventually including all 50 states in the system. Several bar associations have requested proposals or live presentations of the Casemaker Web Library® service, which includes court reports, statutes, forms, rules, codes, opinions, bills, case law, etc., as well as access to the libraries of all other states entering the Casemaker consortium.
The Ohio State Bar Association, founded in 1880, is a voluntary association representing approximately 25,000 members of the bench and bar of Ohio as well as nearly 4,000 legal assistants and law students. Through its activities and the activities of its related organizations, the OSBA serves both its members and the public by promoting the highest standards in the practice of law and the administration of justice. -30-