Wisconsin State Law Library

Serving the Wisconsin Supreme Court and State of Wisconsin

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WSLL @ Your Service     June 2009



What’s New – Connie Von Der Heide

Staff News

Last month we bade farewell to Annie Slacter, part time filer. This summer she’s doing some traveling and preparing to start law school in the fall. Best wishes, Annie! This month we welcome Joanna SanDretto, a UW-Madison dual degree law and library school student who’s volunteering at WSLL, MLRC and DCLRC this summer. She’ll assist with some of our regular duties as well as several special projects. Welcome and thank you, Joanna!

Upcoming Classes

There are still some openings in our upcoming legal research classes. In June, learn about using BadgerLink databases for legal research. In July, guest instructor Ulrike Dieterle, Distance Services & Outreach Coordinator at UW-Madison’s Ebling Health Sciences Library, will present a class on medical databases for litigators and legal researchers. In August, get a more in-depth look at our own newly redesigned website, WILawLibrary.gov. And in September, come and learn about using Westlaw on the State Law Library’s public computers.

For complete details and registration information, please visit our Classes page.

Westlaw Classes @ MLRC

The Milwaukee Legal Resource Center will be holding two free Westlaw classes on Wednesday, June 24th. A special class for attorneys only will be held from 12:00 - 1 PM. A general admission session will be held from 1:30 - 2:30 PM. Both classes will be held in the law library, Room 307 A of the Milwaukee County Courthouse. One CLE credit will be applied for. There is a limit of 8 per session so register early by stopping in the MLRC, calling 278-4900, or e-mailing Rebecca.Knutson@wicourts.gov.

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A Brief Tour of WILawLibrary.gov – Carol Hassler

In June of last year, we asked what you wanted from our website as we began our redesign. With the help of all your useful feedback, we finally launched our new website last month.

Here’s a quick overview of what’s new across the site:

New WSLL Home Page

Legal Topics

Our Legal Topics pages, full of links to agencies, forms, guides, and laws, have always been useful and extremely popular. We now include on every page, in the right hand sidebar, links to related pages, useful books, journals, and articles, and clickable tags that allow you to keyword search the website.

Also new to the website, our County Resources database allows users to filter through law-related Wisconsin county information. Look up your county’s information today!


Find information on library collections, like Wisconsin Briefs. Keyword search the Judicial Council index directly. Do you have an article citation or just need to search for legal articles? Start with our Articles & Journals page. Our catalog and website searches are also located in this section, but because they’re used so heavily we’ve also included a quick search box on the top right of every page on the site.

Learning Center

Visit our new, extensive FAQ page for answers to common questions about library collections, services, and research. Keep track of upcoming classes and library tours. We’ve moved our legal research guide links to our new Learning Center section, added video tutorials, and collected this newsletter’s Start Here library resource guides in one place.


Our Ask a Librarian service, where we field calls and emails from Wisconsin and beyond, is easy to find from every page on the site. What’s new? Request a Document forms allow you to place document orders, interlibrary loan, and other requests. Need to sign up for a library card, renew materials, or just update your information? Get information and access to forms quickly from our Borrow Library Materials page. You may also fill out an email form to reserve one of our rooms for rent. In addition, we’ve added a page with information about computer and internet access in the library, and the Dane County Legal Resource Center’s book sale.

About Us

Find library information, such as phone numbers, addresses, maps and hours, policies, and library staff. Keep up on current news with our Library Highlights feature, or read past issues of our newsletters.

Lost? Try browsing through our site index, which lists major pages on the website, or contact us for more assistance.

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This Just In… – Julie Tessmer

Featured title

Civil Justice in Wisconsin: a Fact Book, with Commentary, by Marc Galanter and Susan Steingass
University of Wisconsin Law School, 2009
Call Number: KFW 2908 .G35 2009
Also available online

Learn how many civil cases were filed in Wisconsin, what they were about and how many went to trial. Anyone involved in the Wisconsin legal community will find this to be a fascinating glimpse into our court system.

New titles

The Art of the Settlement, by Robert L. Elliott
National Business Institute, 2009
Call Number: KFW 2960.3 .A75 A77 2009

Taught by leaders in the field, this seminar was packed with lectures on settlement strategies, how to succeed at a settlement conference and techniques for winning awards.

Probate Practice: the Essential Basics, by Norman L. Goeschko
National Business Institute, 2009
Call Number: KFW 2544 .A75 P73 2009

This manual covers initiating the probate process, tax matters, closing the estate, and explains common probate problems and how to solve them.

The Role of Judges in Managing Juvenile Sex Offense Cases: Keys to Informed Decision-making: a Judicial Education Curriculum
Center for Effective Public Policy, 2009
Call Number: KF 9325 .R76 2009

New Federal Government Documents

Did you know that the State Law Library is a selective depository for federal government documents? Our collection includes annual reports, laws, decisions, regulations, manuals and general publications of various legislative, judicial and executive branch agencies. The library also provides access to many federal government depository publications which are now only available electronically. Here are a few recent acquisitions:

Anatomy of a Patent Case, by the Complex Litigation Committee of the American College of Trial Lawyers
Federal Judicial Center, 2009
Call Number: KF 31120 .A84 2009

A Guide to the Judicial Management of Bankruptcy Mega-Cases, by Laura B. Bartell
Federal Judicial Center, 2009
Call Number: KF 1527 .B37 2009

An Investigation into the Removal of Nine U.S. Attorneys in 2006, U.S. Department of Justice
Office of Inspector General, 2008
Call Number: KF 5107 .A64 2008
Also available online from the DOJ Office of Professional Responsibility

Learn About the United States: Quick Civics Lessons for the New Naturalization Test, U.S. Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Citizenship and ImmigrationServices, 2009
Call Number: HS 8.2:L 47/2009/PACK
Contains an audio CD which has 100 questions and answers for the new naturalization test.

Expanding ESL, Civics, and Citizenship Education in Your Community: a Start-up Guide, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, 2009
Call Number: HS 1.8.C 49


New Titles RSS Feed
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 in Brief – Heidi Yelk


Perhaps these miniature laptops have caught your eye as you browsed through stores like Target or Best Buy. Like a kitten or puppy, a netbook draws you in with its adorable mini keyboard, petite screen, compact size and low, low price. It appears to be a cute, mini-version of a familiar “grown-up” laptop. But what’s inside? What should you consider before buying one?

Most expert commentary on this topic warns that a netbook, in its current phase, should not serve as a replacement for a laptop or desktop computer. Many experts see them as companions, filling the need for a portable computer that can be used for lighter work on the go, such as keeping in touch with the office via email or web-browsing. Some say they bridge the gap between a smartphone and a full-fledged laptop. Processing power is lacking for heavy duty jobs.

To determine what to look for in a netbook, the following may be helpful:

For discussion about use of netbooks, see:

For comparisons and reviews see:

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Odds ‘n’ Endings – Amy Crowder

Now that you’ve taken A Brief Tour of WILawLibrary.gov, let’s visit some of the lesser known features of the website.

  • Learn about the online legal research resources available on our public computers and accessible remotely by our library card holders.
  • Apply for a library card by using the Library Card Application form.
  • Subscribe to our RSS feeds and keep track of upcoming classes offered at the library, new titles in our collection, publication of the newsletter, as well as other news. You may subscribe to the feeds on our Website Terms of Use page or by using the feed link in your browser’s address bar.
  • Is the text size too small for you to read? Use the text resizer located next to the orange “share” button on every page.
  • Speaking of the “share” button, you can use it to easily bookmark a page or share it with others. This is an easy way to “pay forward” the good information you’ve found!
  • If you’re having trouble finding something, click on Ask a Librarian, also available on each page, or call us toll-free at 1-800-322-9755 and ask for the Reference Desk. If you have a comment about the website, submit it through the Site Feedback link at the bottom of each page. We’d love to hear your thoughts and suggestions.

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Comments Welcome!

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