Law Resource Guide

This guide provides information on finding legal resources for courses in the LAWS Program.

Tips for finding Case Law

Understand case citation formats

A case citation is the system used to organise, identify and locate a case. Citations vary depending on whether the case is reported or unreported. Case citations are a convenient, standard way of abbreviating the name and publication details of a case. Each case has its ow, unique citations(s).

 

Understand the difference between reported and unreported cases

AustLII

CCH

CCH Intelliconnect provides access to the following case law sources:

  • Australian Contract Laws Cases
  • Australian Employment Case Roundup
  • Australian Child Support Cases
  • Australian De Facto Relationship Cases
  • Australian Family Law Cases
  • Australian Work Health and Safety Law - Cases
  • Australian Tax Casebook

If you are looking for a specific case, type all or part of the citation into the search box at the top of the page.

Westlaw

Westlaw AU provides access to FirstPoint (case citator), Unreported Judgments, and the following report series:

  • Australian Criminal Reports (ACR) 1979+
  • Commonwealth Law Reports (CLR) 1903+
  • Federal Court Reports (FCR) 1984+;
  • Federal Law Reports (FLR)
  • New South Wales Law Reports (NSWLR) 1971+

Lexis Advance Pacific

Lexis Advance Pacific provides access to Unreported Judgments and the following report series:

  • Administrative Law Decisions (ALD)
  • Australian Capital Territory Reports (ACTR)
  • Australian Law Reports (ALR)
  • Family Law Reports (FamLR)
  • Intellectual Property Reports (IPR)
  • Motor Vehicle Reports (MVR)
  • Northern Territory Reports (NTR)

To search for Australian case law in Lexis CaseBase:

  1. Go to the Advanced Search link above the right hand end of the main search box.
  2. Open the drop down menu for Advanced Search and click on 'Cases'.
  3. Type your search terms into the boxes
  4. Use the tick boxes under Jurisdiction to limit to a state or group of states.

JADE

BarNet JADE (Judgments and Decisions Enhanced) is a free caselaw and legislation database. JADE can be used to search for or browse Australian legislation and court and tribunal decisions, and receive alerts of new decisions and court digests. Jade has digitised copies of the Commonwealth Law Reports (CLRs) from 1903-1952.

A basic JADE account is free for anyone. You need to register to use all of JADE's free features. Law students can also receive free access to the enhanced features of JADE Professional from their university email address, by sending an email to editors@jade.io.

LawCite

LawCite is an automatically generated international legal case citator. It is something you use to locate judgments and to see how these have been subsequently dealt with and commented upon.

Definitions

Case citation
A case citation is a standard way of uniquely describing a case. It is important to adhere to the rules of citation so that the cases to which you refer can be easily identified and located by others.

Case citator
Case citators provide information on where to find cases. The citator lists all of the report series in which a case is reported, and includes information on:

  • Later cases in which the case was looked at by the court, e.g. considered, followed, distinguished, overruled etc. This is known as 'noting up' or tracing the judicial history of a case.
  • Statutes judicially considered in the case
  • Journal articles written about the case
  • Some citators also include catchwords - terms describing the nature of the case, e.g. duty of care.
 
These Case Citators are listed in the A-Z Database: