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About Legal Research

Legal research is the process of finding law relevant to a particular situation. It involves retrieving and citing legal references such as case law, state and federal constitutions and statutes, administrative regulations, codes, legislative history, documents, etc.

Because legal research involves finding primary and secondary sources of law, it's necessary to be familiar with them so you know what laws you're looking for and how to best utilize them. This requires the skills of reading and interpreting statutes, common law, and other legal documents and knowing whether they're pertinent to the task at hand.

A goal of legal research is to predict how a court or other authority will decide a dispute involving a specific factual situation. In the legal profession, attorneys, law clerks, and paralegals conduct research from their client's factual situation, analyze it, and then write a report that's consistent between facts, questions, and the law. The report, referred to as an legal memo, interoffice memo, or legal memorandum, will assist the client in making proper decisions.

Legal research is time consuming. It's never-ending learning experience. This is due in part to the rapid increase in legal material as a rtesult of new legislation, amendment of existing legislation, and additional court rulings that create precedent). The lack of coordination between those responsible for the publication of legal material, the private publishers and government printers, complicate the process.

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Re-Elect Hardy Myers
Oregon Attorney General
Campaign to Re-Elect Hardy Myers
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