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WSLL @ Your Service April 2021

Civil Jury Instructions Updated for 2021 - Carol Hassler

The Wisconsin Civil Jury Instructions have recently been updated, with a 2021 release approved by the Wisconsin Judicial Conference’s Civil Jury Instructions Committee. The fifty-second supplement to the Civil Jury Instructions updates the publication on legislative actions and judicial decisions through January 21, 2021.

The update includes revisions of ten existing jury instructions, as well as one new instruction. New to the set is:

The following instructions have been updated:

Earlier this year the Library partnered with the Office of Judicial Education to debut free access to the Wisconsin Jury Instructions on our website. While updated instructions can be downloaded at any time from our website, many readers may wish to keep their print sets up-to-date. Updating an existing set of print instructions works just as it has in prior years.

Download and print the fifty-second release. Blank pages have been inserted to make double sided printing easier. File new and updated instructions, along with the updated table of cases and index in your print set. A complete, printable file of all the current Civil Jury Instructions and finding aids is also available.

For information on the status of the Committee’s work, please contact Bryce Pierson at bryce.pierson@wicourts.gov.

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Coming Soon: eBooks with Lexis Digital

We are excited to announce a new collection, Lexis Digital, will soon be available to our cardholders. Lexis Digital will allow State Law Library cardholders to check out an eBook for easy research from anywhere in the state.

The highlight of the digital collection are our Matthew Bender titles. These popular eBooks include Nichols on Eminent Domain, Thompson on Real Property, Zoning Law and Practice, New Appleman on Insurance, Larson's Workers Compensation Law, and Corbin on Contracts. Also available as print volumes in our library, these books and more will be available for full text searching or browsing through Lexis Digital.

Watch our social media and newsletter later this spring for updates about Lexis Digital, and tips for getting the most out of our new eBooks platform.

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New Books - Kari Zelinka

New Book! Wisconsin Landlord & Tenant Manual, 2021
Call Number: KFW 2517 .W57 2020

At the State Law Library, we help numerous patrons each week with questions about eviction, landlord entry, repairs, security deposits, and other landlord tenant issues. If you find yourself in this situation even occasionally, check out the Wisconsin Landlord & Tenant Manual. Chances are, it may become a go-to resource on your bookshelf!

The lifecycle of a tenancy is discussed from the beginning - with selecting and screening tenants, and signing a lease. Later concerns are also addressed such as property left behind and collecting on a judgment after a tenancy has ended. Many Wisconsin state court forms, guides, and Wisconsin Legal Blank forms are included. Local ordinances and differences between counties are discussed and how state landlord tenant laws apply in various situations.

Written in plain English, this manual can help landlords, tenants, attorneys, property management employees, and anyone fielding questions from these groups.

Chapters include:

  • Screening and Qualifying Prospective Tenants
  • Rental Documents
  • Earnest Money and Security Deposits
  • Repairs and Maintenance of Rental Premises
  • General Rental Issues
  • Renewal and Termination of Rental Agreements
  • Eviction
  • Legal Proceedings and Recovery of Damages
  • Collections
  • Manufactured Home Community Rentals

New Edition! Renters Rights Manual, 10th ed, by Janet Portman, 2021
Call Number: KF 590 .Z9 P673 2021

Also in the field of landlord tenant law, author Janet Portman has provided an updated guide to rental rights in this new book. Renters Rights Manual, now in the 10th edition, has been updated to include COVID-related advice for tenants as well as information on rent controls. The appendices include updates to state laws and how to find landlord tenant laws online. Don’t forget, you can always call your local law librarian if you get stuck!

Chapters include:

  • Leases and Rental Agreements
  • Rent Rules
  • Security Deposits
  • Repairs and Maintenance
  • Tenants’ Right to Privacy
  • How Tenancies Change and End
  • Getting Your Deposit Back
  • Landlord Retaliation
  • Rent Control
  • Getting Help with Your Dispute


See our latest New Titles list for a list of new books and other resources.

For assistance in accessing these or other resources, please contact our Reference Desk.

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Tech Tip - Jenna Marquardt

Using Citation Tools – Juris-M / Zotero

Zotero and its variant, Juris-M, are research management tools that can help you organize citations and other reference material, like journal articles, webpages, case law, and statutes. A research management tool helps you to keep track of the resources you gather on different devices and compile them for easy reference later on.

Citation formats

Zotero is not designed for legal sources, and does not automatically generate Bluebook citations. Juris-M is based off of the Zotero software and is specifically intended for legal citations. Both Zotero and Juris-M are free to download and easy to use.

Easy installation

Visit the Zotero website to download Zotero desktop software on Mac, Windows, or Linux, install the Zotero Chrome Connector for your browser, or look for other plugins.

Juris-M can be installed on Windows or Google Chrome. The Juris-M website also includes an updated blog with tips and tricks.

For more information, check out these guides from other law libraries!

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Library News - Carol Hassler

Spring CLE Classes

Two free CLE webinars are now open for registration through the Wisconsin State Law Library. Registration for each webinar is limited to 100. Registrations will be approved daily by the moderator. Once your registration is approved, you will get an email confirmation with connection information. Please reach out to carol.hassler@wicourts.gov with questions.

Google Scholar
Thursday, April 15, 12:00 - 1:00 p.m.
Location: Live webinar - Register for Google Scholar

Registration is free. 1 CLE credit

Looking for free, full-text case law searching? Hoping it will be easy to use and accessible from any computer? Try Google Scholar! Google Scholar includes both federal and state case law. You'll find recent cases as well as an extensive archive. In addition, Scholar can be used to search law reviews and legal journals. Participants will learn basic and advanced search techniques and discuss the strengths and limitations of the Google Scholar database.

HeinOnline: The Information Source You Need, Where You Need It
Thursday, May 13th, 12:00-1:00 p.m.
Location: Live webinar - Register for HeinOnline

Registration is free. 1 CLE credit applied for

With access to full-text law reviews and bar journals, primary federal and state law, state constitutions, congressional documents, and sources of federal legislative history - this database is too good to be missed. Learn what HeinOnline has to offer.


Presentation to UW Lawyering Skills students

Last month State Law Librarian, Amy Crowder, spoke with UW Law School students enrolled in the Lawyering Skills course. Amy’s presentation focused on the many services the State Law Library can provide for soon-to-be attorneys such as borrowing books by mail, access to legal databases, ordering copies, and getting research help from our experienced librarians.


Newsletter recognized by Government Law Library group

Amy Crowder was recognized as a Marketing Maven in the spring issue of GLL-News, a newsletter published by the Government Law Libraries Special Interest Section of the American Association of Law Libraries. Amy talked about WSLL @ Your Service as a way to stay in touch with library users throughout the state. Congratulations, Amy!


Happy Birthday, WSLL!

On April 20, 1836 the library was established by the same Act of Congress that created the Territory of Wisconsin. 185 years later, we’re proud to continue to serve the State of Wisconsin by providing the highest quality of professional expertise in order to facilitate equal access to the law. In our February newsletter, we looked back on 2020 and reflected on the history our library has endured, as well as the promise of the coming year. We look forward to continuing to serve you!


Westlaw Webinars

Thomson Reuters continues to offer free CLE-credit classes to attorneys. The following webinars are offered to users in several states. Please note that some search options and features of these webinars are not included in the law library’s subscription to Westlaw. All registration, attendance verification, and CLE application is handled by Westlaw, not the law library. During each webinar, four attendance codes will be read. Make note of these codes to verify your attendance.

Westlaw Edge (60 minutes; 1 CLE Credit Pending)
Click on the date to visit the registration page by Westlaw:
Wednesday, May 12, 11:30 CDT

In this 60 minute online class, we’ll discuss how to utilize the advanced technology in Westlaw Edge. Westlaw Edge is powered by state-of-the-art artificial intelligence built upon more than 100 years of editorial enhancements. This session will discuss how to use Westsearch Plus, use Overruling Risk to understand if a case has been implicitly overruled, easily compare prior statutes to aid in statutory analysis, research judges and opposing counsel using litigation analytics, and analyze your own brief using Quick Check. We will also touch on user experience improvements that aid in completing your research faster than ever.

Legal Ethics: Attorney Competence with Technology (60 minutes; 1 CLE Credit Pending)
Click on the date to visit the registration page by Westlaw:
Tuesday, April 20, 1:00 CDT
Tuesday, May 18, 12:30 CDT

Attorney competence in the ever-changing world of technology is a tricky subject. The technology does not remain static, and the attorney’s workload is continually increasing. The ABA has stated that attorneys must keep abreast of changes in technology. In addition, many legal commentators continue to publish articles and other resources regarding the implications of technology competence.

It is essential, therefore, to stay up-to-date with the latest technology. This webinar will follow the rule on keeping up with current technology with a brief tour of Practical Law, Drafting Assistant, and the following Westlaw resources:

  • Court Rules, and Secondary Sources
  • Briefs and Trial Court Documents,
  • Attorney, Judge, and Expert Witness Profiles.

Drafting Assistant Essentials (60 minutes; 1 CLE Credit Pending)
Click on the date to visit the registration page by Westlaw:
Tuesday, April 6, 11:00 CDT

Litigation: locate cases to support your arguments with the click of a button. Ensure your citation formatting is correct. Automatically append the full text of authorities cited to your document. Quickly insert hyperlinks in your documents so others can access the full text citations. Easily compile your list of citations using our efficient TOA builder.

Transactional: Learn how to avoid unintended drafting errors and reduce risk while cutting your proofreading time in half. Deal Proof works within your word processor to intelligently scan your documents in seconds, alerting you to errors, inconsistencies, missing information and more.

Statutes and Legislative History (60 minutes; 1 CLE Credit Pending)
Click on the date to visit the registration page by Westlaw
Tuesday, April 13, 3:30 CDT

In this class, learn how to conduct statutes and legislative history research on Westlaw. We will review how to retrieve statutes by citation, term searches, or a table of contents, and how to find legislative history in relation to statutory research. We will also review additional statutory tools such as historical statutes, the statutes index, and the popular name table.

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April Snapshot

Spring Line-up
Photo by Carol Hassler

Our sidewalk service remains a popular way to check out and return library books or pickup copies or forms. Use our library catalog to locate the items you would like to check out. Fill out our Borrow Materials form, email wsll.ref@wicourts.gov, or call us at 608-267-9696 to place your request. A librarian will schedule a pickup time for you outside of the library entrance on Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd, between the hours of 9:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m Monday through Thursday.

We are accepting snapshots! Do you have a photo highlighting libraries, attractions or points of historical interest? Send your photo to the editor at carol.hassler@wicourts.gov to be included in a future issue.

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