Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Mass Jury Duty Web Site 

The Commonwealth launched a new web site devoted to jury duty services - http://www.massjury.com/. On this site you can find general information about juror service in Massachusetts, information about serving jury duty if you are summoned, and forms for jurors.

Source: Metro


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Monday, December 17, 2007

New Jersey Abolishes Death Penalty 

Today Governor Jon S. Corzine of New Jersey signed a bill abolishing the death penalty in New Jersey. Passed last week by the New Jersey Assembly and Senate, the bill is the first legislative abolition of the death penalty since the Supreme Court reauthorized the death penalty in 1976.
To read more about the history of the death penalty in New Jersey, see today's article in the Boston Globe. To read more about the death penalty generally, see the Death Penalty Information Center.

Source: Boston Globe


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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Ask.com Now Allows Erasing of Searches 

Ask.com unveiled AskEraser today. When it is enabled, "AskEraser will completely delete your search queries and data from Ask.com servers, including: your IP address, User ID and Session ID cookies, as well as the complete text of your search query--all within a matter of hours." -- ask.com
To enable, simply click on the AskEraser link on ask.com.

This is in stark contrast to the amount of time other search engines retain queries. The Globe reports that Google and Microsoft's search engines store personal information for 18 months and Yahoo and AOL retain this information for 13 months. Read more about this in the Globe article.

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Gall v. US and Kimbrough v. US Resources (addressing federal sentencing) 

The following are some resources for Gall v. US [opinion] and Kimbrough v. US [opinion], both of which addressed issues in federal sentencing:

SCOTUSblog Posts: Commentary: Gall and Appellate Court Transparency, Commentary: A Justice-by-Justice Review of Gall and Kimbrough, Commentary: Winners and Losers in Gall and Kimbrough and Commentary: Gall Advances the Booker Revolution, But Also Leaves Fodder for the Court of Appeals Counter-Revolutionaries.

News Sources: Court Restores Sentencing Powers of Federal Judges [New York Times], Justices OK Latitude on Sentencing [LA Times], and Panel May Ease Crack Cocaine Sentences [AP].

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Thursday, December 06, 2007

Civil Procedure Changes 

Civil Procedure will never be the same.

First, the rewritten Federal Rules of Civil Procedure went into effect on December 1, 2007. Characterized as comprehensive "style-only" revisions, the changes make style and terminology consistent throughtout the Rules.

Second, amendments to the Massachusetts Rules of Civil Procedure become effective on March 1, 2008. Much less comprehensive than the changes to the Federal Rules, these amendments primarily apply to District Court practice.

Sources: U.S. Courts: Federal Rulemaking; Massachusetts Law Updates

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Wednesday, December 05, 2007

HeinOnline Offers Help 

HeinOnline, one of the law schools legal databases, now offers live help through the "Help" button found in the upper right hand corner, on the welcome screen, and in the technical and training sections of the home page.

HeinOnline offers access to full text of hundreds of recent and older legal periodicals, English Reports, Code of Federal Regulations, Federal Register, U.S. Treaties, Statutes at Large, Congressional Record, U.S. Attorney General opinions, U.S. Supreme Court cases, and state session laws.

Law students and faculty can access Hein from on campus or off-campus using the proxy server (you will be prompted to enter your name and i.d. number). Access to Hein is available to Suffolk Law alumni at the law library. Another option to access Hein is through the Massachusetts Trial Court Libraries. You will need a Trial Court Law Libraries Card to access this database remotely.

Source: WisBlawg

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