Get state court opinion summaries delivered by email or RSS

Many state appeals and supreme courts post their decisions at their Web sites and will deliver newly issued opinions, some with captions and summaries, to you by email or syndication. Look at your state’s court site to determine if it offers a notification service.

The Iowa Court of Appeals offers email notification of “supreme court opinions, court of appeals opinions, press releases and orders.” Conversely, the New Jersey judiciary Web site posts opinions and calendars of upcoming decisions but doesn’t have a built-in notification. In this case, I use the low-cost service, WatchThatPage, which sends me the new content whenever this Web site is updated. I receive case summaries that look like this.

A-52-05 State v. Saleem Crawley (58,340)
Where police officers, in response to an anonymous tip about criminal activity, requested defendant to stop and answer some questions because he matched the description provided in the tip, can defendant be found guilty of obstruction for running away? Certification granted: 10/12/2005
Argued: 2/15/06
Decided: 7/24/06

I can then go to the court site to read the full opinion. Rutgers Law library has constructed an RSS feed for New Jersey appeals and tax cases.

Even better, the Utah Appellate Court provides real-time delivery of court opinions by RSS, a free means of receiving updated content from user selected sites. The RSS program I like is Bloglines. Here you can collect and read all your dynamically refreshed content at one Web site.

Ohio, West Virginia, Oklahoma, Nevada and Maryland all distribute court opinions by RSS. The U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals’ opinions are also syndicated.

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