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Researching Judges, Law Firms, and Lawyers

A guide to the tools available to Northeastern University Law Students wishing to research judges, law firms, and lawyers.

All the Tools

Litigation "Analytics"

Each of the major commercial research services provides a database aggregating biographical and contact information with the service's litigation analysis tools. These databases may be used to find information about judges, lawyers, law firms, and expert witnesses.

Judicial Directories

ALMANAC OF THE FEDERAL JUDICIARY - Available on Westlaw, is a venerable publication combining biographical information about federal judges with anonymized comments from lawyers, e.g.: "She won't cut you off; she'll allow you to be heard but she's not swayed by nonsense."

BNA's DIRECTORY OF STATE AND FEDERAL COURTS - Available on Bloomberg Law, contains contact information (telephone, sometimes email) for judges and other important courthouse figures, including court clerks, court administrators, and official reporters.

AMERICAN BENCH - a comprehensive directory of state and federal judges with superior work history information.

Federal Judicial Center Biographical Directory of Article III Federal Judges

The Directory of Minority Judges of the United States, 4th Ed., ABA (2008)

Court Websites

National Center for State Courts STATE COURTS WEB SITES

United States Courts COURT WEBSITE LINKS

Law Firm Employment Research

VAULT - a law firm directory designed to help prospective employees decide if a firm will be a good fit. Firm profiles include news, a Vault-authored firm profile, and a pitch from the firm. Vault's focus is on firm culture. The first page lists the firm's Uppers ("good pay") and Downers ("the hours").

ABOVE THE LAW'S LAW FIRM DIRECTORY - a crasser, gossipier version of Vault. Compensation and firm profitability are given pride of place, as are anonymized "insider" reviews, e.g.: "Our firm has an unwritten 'no jerks' policy."

Other Tools

ALM LEGAL COMPASS - is the most comprehensive source of information about law firms. Law firm profiles include financials, rankings, and client information.