Wisconsin State Law Library

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WSLL @ Your Service   March 2004
An E-publication of the Wisconsin State Law Library

What's New -- Amy Crowder   WSLL Web -- Elaine Sharp

Welcome New Staff

We welcome Christina Skasa, the new Library Associate at the Milwaukee Legal Resource Center. Christina is a recent graduate of UW-Madison (English). She plays piano and completed course work in music history at the UW. In addition, she has experience working at a veterinary office and an emergency veterinary hospital. Christina is currently working on her MLIS at UW-Milwaukee and hopes to graduate in August.

We congratulate Paul Olson on his new Library Associate position at the Dane County Legal Resource Center. Paul graduated in December from the UW-Madison (Mathematics) where he did undergraduate research in minimal surfaces. This fall, he hopes to attend graduate school in math. Paul, who enjoys running, plans on competing in the Fox Cities Marathon in the fall.

Teaching Legal Research

Connie Von Der Heide, Reference/Outreach Services Librarian, taught a session on free legal research websites at the UW Madison SLIS on Feb. 6th. The session was part of a six hour, non-credit lecture series which also covered fundamentals of legal research, LexisNexis, and Westlaw. Laura Olsen Dugan, Thomson West, and Pam Noyd, Foley & Lardner-Madison, also taught sessions.

Connie will present Finding the Law on the Internet at a Municipal Judges seminar on March 12th, in Appleton.

Jane Colwin, State Law Librarian, taught Legal Research on the Internet for the 2004 WDAA/SPET Winter Conference on January 14, 2004. On February 20th, Jane also presented an Internet Tips and Tricks class at the Clerks of Court Institute.

Connie and Jane will be presenting Legal Research in a Nutshell to librarians in the Mid-Wisconsin Federated Library System on March 18th, at the Beaver Dam Community Library. If your group is interested in hosting a workshop, contact Jane or Connie at the Library’s toll-free number.

New Items

WSLL recently acquired several titles that may be of interest to you. Contact our Reference Staff if you are interested in borrowing any of these titles.

Age-Specific Arrest Rates and Race-Specific Arrest Rates for Selected Offenses, 1993-2001. Federal Bureau of Investigation, Uniform Crime Reporting Program, 2003.

Create Your Own Employee Handbook : A Legal and Practical Guide by Lisa Guerin & Amy DelPo. 1st ed. Nolo, 2003.

Effective Appellate Advocacy by Frederick Bernays Wiener, edited by Christopher T. Lutz and William Pannill. ABA Section of Litigation, 2004.

Getting Paid : How To Collect From Bankrupt Debtors by Stephen Elias. 1st ed. Nolo, 2003.

Hiring Independent Contractors : The Employers' Legal Guide by Stephen Fishman. 4th ed. Nolo, 2003.

Statutory Interpretation : The Search For Legislative Intent. National Institute for Trial Advocacy, 2002.

All titles are in our online catalog.


Tax Season Is Here
The IRS recently debuted 1040 Central, a new page that pulls together information needed by individuals to prepare and file their 2003 tax returns. Information includes what's new this year, where to file, how to file late, how to report that 2003 Advance Child Tax Credit check you received, and how to check on your refund. Access to forms and publications is also provided. Visit 1040 Central.

For links to additional tax-related information, visit WSLL's Tax Law page.

Privacy & Access to Personal Information
Cornell's Legal Information Institute recently added Right of Privacy: Access to Personal Information to their growing list of Law About... topical guides. The brief discussion of issues contains links to federal legislation, federal and state judicial decisions, and related information. Read about the Right of Privacy.

Looking for County-related Information?
To find directory and statistical information for U.S. counties, visit the Find a County section of the National Association of Counties website. Find a County includes county officials, county seats, courthouse addresses/phone numbers, a list of cities within the county, a link to the county's website, maps of Congressional districts, a state map showing the county's location, etc. Visit Find a County.

Shoreland Zoning
"The Wisconsin DNR is examining possible rule changes to the shoreland management and zoning regulations (NR 115)." Shoreland Zoning, a recent WI Legislative Reference Bureau bibliography, lists publications available online or at the LRB that "...address the issues under consideration." (quotes from website) View bibliography.

Decision Dates for Early U.S. Supreme Court Decisions
This list was compiled because decision dates do not appear beneath the case name in the first 107 volumes of the U.S. Reports. The list covers vol. 2 (Aug. Term 1791)-vol. 107 (Oct. Term 1882). Opinions are listed as they appear in U.S. Reports with a corresponding reference to other editions (eg. Dallas, Cranch, Wheaton, etc.). View list. A copy of this list is also shelved in WSLL, at KF101.6 .A86 1997.

Is a New Car in Your Future?
The automotive magazine Car & Driver provides a variety of online car-related information. For those thinking about buying a new vehicle, the Buyer's Guide provides reviews and comparison pricing for new cars and Kelley Blue Book values for used cars. Visit Car and Driver.

WSLL's website also provides links to information about Automobiles/Motor Vehicles and Auto Insurance.

Tech Tip in Brief -- Heidi Yelk Learn @ The Law Library

“Speed Dial” for Webpages – using the Links Bar and “friendly names” in Internet Explorer

In Internet Explorer, you can use the Links bar to place “short cut” links to the websites you visit most frequently. To display the Links bar, pull down the VIEW menu; go to TOOLBARS and make sure the LINKS bar is checked. The Links bar will display to the right of the Address bar. There are three ways to add a webpage to the Links bar. You can drag an icon for the page from the Address bar to the Links bar; drag a link from a webpage to the Links bar; or add a page to your Favorites list and place it in the Links folder. Now, when you want to access a page quickly, all you need to do is click on the link on your Links bar. To delete links from your Links bar, simply right mouse click on the link and choose Delete.

Another quick way to open a webpage is to add it to your Favorites list using a “friendly name.” Friendly names can be typed into the Address bar to take you directly to a webpage. To create a friendly name, display the targeted page in your web browser, click Favorites and choose “Add to Favorites.” Remove the contents of the Name box and enter a short word (or name) for the web page. For example, display the Wisconsin State Law Library website. From the Favorites menu, choose “Add to Favorites.” Remove the words Wisconsin State Law Library - Home Page from the Name box and enter a shorter name, such as library. Now, when you want to access the State Law Library’s homepage, all you have to do is type library in the Address bar.

Send your suggestions for future legal research Tech Tips to the editor.

Legal Research Tip o’ the Month: Shortcut to Web Materials
As you know, the quickest way to locate materials in the library is by using the library catalog. Did you know that using our catalog is also a quick way to locate materials on the web?  

Many of our catalog records – currently over 2,600 of them -- include links to web-based materials. For example, look at the record for the State of Wisconsin Blue Book. It includes not only a list of the printed volumes available at the library and which ones are currently available, but it also provides the web address for viewing current and past Blue Books on the Legislative Reference Bureau website.

So, the next time you need something from the library, check our catalog first. You just might find what you need without even leaving your chair! And of course, if you don’t find what you need, please contact us for assistance.

Hands-on Legal Research Classes
Classes at the State Law Library have now been scheduled through August. Next up: Tax Resources on the Web on March 3, and Mining for Company Nuggets on March 17. For a complete listing of classes and registration information, please visit our Classes & Tours webpage.


Odds 'n' Endings -- Connie Von Der Heide

Is It Legit?
You’ve no doubt been the recipient of the occasional legitimate-sounding email that turns out to be a hoax or urban legend. If you’re wondering whether an email tale, alert or offer is for real, use one of these websites to find out: Urban Legends Reference Pages or F-Secure.com’s Hoax Warnings page.

Notables for March

March 2: Read Across America Day and Dr. Seuss’s 100th Birthday.

March 3: National Anthem Day. The Star Spangled Banner was named the national anthem on this day in 1931 by Act of Congress, signed by President Herbert C. Hoover.

March 16: Freedom of Information Day, observed on the birthday of James Madison, “Father of the Constitution.” For information about the Freedom of Information Act, visit our Legal Topics webpage (click on Freedom of Info. Act).

March 17: St. Patrick’s Day. Read more about it at HistoryChannel.com.

March 20: Happy First Day of Spring! To read more about the spring (vernal) equinox, visit this Fact Monster webpage.


Ask a Librarian:  800-322-9755; 608-267-9696 (In Madison); wsll.ref@wicourts.gov
Library Hours/Locations:  WSLL (WI State Law Library), DCLRC (Dane Co. Legal Resource Center), MLRC (Milwaukee Legal Resource Center)
Visit Our Website: http://wilawlibrary.gov

Connie Von Der Heide 608-267-2202 Comments welcome!