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insites (web)

Every Issue

Cite as: (2009) 83(03) LIJ, p. 70

This month we review a freely available international case citator, the full-text UK Reports 1220-1873, a new Victorian site dedicated to exporters, the County Court's website, the Australian Treaties Library and the Human Resources magazine online.


AustLII has unleashed the alpha (code for “not quite ready”) version of LawCite, the first freely available international case citator in Australia. Launched by High Court Justice Michael Kirby [now retired], LawCite already contains the details of over two million cases and will continue to expand. Without turning this into a tech review, the beauty of the site is that it will attempt to pull citations automatically as new cases appear on AustLII. This means no editorial input is needed, which means you get faster access to your citations. The site will link to the full text of cases if they are freely available via the “LII” network, or point you in the direction of the correct commercial publisher if not. We think it is brilliant.

English Reports

It was only recently that insites reviewed CommonLII, but with the publication of the English Reports 1220-1873 online we think it deserves another mention. Launched by Justice Michael Kirby at the same time as the new LawCite service, the UK Reports are a major accomplishment in the provision of free access to the common law. The full-text data was provided by UK commercial law publisher Justis, who must be thanked for this invaluable gift to lawyers and the public alike. The cases have been provided as PDF documents, some of which are not of the highest quality. If you find yourself with a blurred copy of a case you need for court, the LIV library is always happy to provide a clearer, photocopied version.

Export Connections

Another new site, this time from the Victorian government. Export Connections is the new name for the revamped “Victorian Export Network” initiative that was launched in 2006. Although primarily intended for business owners, the site is very useful for Victorian solicitors with clients interested in entering the export market as it provides a general overview of the legalities involved and links to relevant legislation. For practitioners already accustomed to helping clients with the legal implications of exporting, there is a “find an adviser” tool on the website that allows business owners to search for a qualified lawyer, accountant etc. by postcode. If you are willing to provide an initial free consultation, why not consider joining their database.

County Court of Victoria

A visit to the County Court website is usually a daily occurrence in the course of fulfilling research inquiries at the library, and like frogs in a saucepan we don’t often notice the small changes. However, returning to our last review in 2002 reveals just how far the site has come. The Practice & Procedure section contains easy access to most commonly used court forms, but now also offers eFiling, allowing the electronic lodgment and retrieval of court documents. There is an extensive list of practice notes accessible through the search function of the site, and the judgments are also searchable. It is these judgments that really show how much progress has been made in the accessibility of information
online, with new cases added frequently, with little lag between the decision and its publication online.

Australian Treaties Library

This is another database in the extensive list of free resources provided by AustLII. The Australian Treaties Library is the result of a commitment made by the Commonwealth government in 1996 to provide access to treaties and their explanatory material. The site uses the familiar AustLII “keep it simple” layout and the same search technology used for all databases in the AustLII family, but also allows you to browse treaties by subject. One particularly handy feature is the Australian Treaty Action Monthly Update which briefly lists agreements and announcements for the month in a handy one-page format. The update is not available as an email alert, so we suggest using one of the many “page change alert” tools if you need to be the first to know.

Human Resources

The online version of the Australian Human Resources magazine contains some great informative reading for those involved in employment law. The daily news section of the site is brief and to the point with short summaries of the latest wisdom from the industry. The amount of new content added to this section is not overwhelming, so a weekly visit to catch up is ample. There is a much larger archive of features and editorials certainly worth browsing through, grouped by relevant topics or “departments”. For those firms not involved in this area of practice we still
recommend this site for its extensive “HR Directory”. Broken down into areas of service or expertise, it contains an extensive list of links to firms and individuals ready to assist with your human resources needs.

Website reviews

Website reviews are provided by the LIV library, ph 9607 9359; email

We welcome suggestions for websites to include in this column.

Neither the LIV nor the LIJ in any way endorses or takes any responsibility whatsoever for any material contained on external websites referred to by the LIJ.


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