Report back on current awareness roundtable – 20th October 2015

ALLA(WA) held a current awareness roundtable on 20th October 2015 at Jackson McDonald to discuss current awareness and the resources available to assist with keeping up-to-date with case law, legislation and news.

A number of discussions took place, and the following question was put to the 11 members that attended:

How do library staff notify clients/fee earners of new law reports, journals etc. when many of us are now predominantly electronic?
One member indicated that it is responsibility of the fee earner to keep up-to-date by signing up to receive the LexisNexis notifiers, alerts via Westlaw AU etc.

A number of members mentioned that they still spend time either photocopying the contents pages of law reports and journals or circulating the electronic issues/table of contents to subscribed fee earners.

Some members mentioned that the use of the library catalogue allows for current awareness to be streamlined. First library software for example allows library staff to link to electronic journals and issues, and it is the responsibility of users to subscribe to relevant current awareness alerts.

Following on from that, a brainstorming session encouraged members to discuss relevant subscriptions, free resources and products that can assist with current awareness and research.

What are the resources you use for legislation current awareness?
A number of members indicated that they subscribe to LawLex. This service provides for bill tracking and alerts to be set up for amendments to Acts and subsidiary legislation. Some members utilise the ‘As made’ or ‘As passed’ section on Comlaw or State Law Publisher to keep track of new legislation.

Alerts to media statements from the Government of Western Australia and the Commonwealth government provide notification of new and prospective amendments to legislation, as well awareness of state wide projects and developments.

The Western Australian Parliament and the Commonwealth Parliament allow users to monitor or track the progress of a Bill through Parliament.

What are the resources you use for case law alerts? 

Daily unreported judgments is a free email service that identifies new cases that have been handed down by the courts.

Jade Barnet allows subscribers to set up alerts on specific topics of law, legislation etc.

Court notifiers (not an exhaustive list): High Court of Australia; Supreme Court of Western Australia; District Court of Western Australia.

What services/subscriptions can be used for media and newspaper alerts? 

Daily Business News alert is a free email alert that provides an overview of business news within Western Australia.

InfoXpress is a daily subscription that provides a summary of daily business news from The Age, The Australian, Sydney Morning Herald and Australian Financial Review.Other subscription services that cover media and newspaper alerts include: NexisNews; Capital Monitor.

What are other alerting services?
ASX alerts is a complimentary service for subscribers to the Australian Stock Exchange Listing Rules through LexisNexis. Subscribers receive a notification when the listing rules are updated.

Bloomberg is a subscription service, where members can sign up to receive alerts and live company data for listed companies.Other similar subscription services include: Company360; DatAnalysis.

InvestorPA is a free alerting service for Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) and New Zealand Stock Exchange (NZX) company announcements.Subscribers can sign up to receive alerts for up to 100 companies.

LexisNexis LegalExpress is complimentary service for existing LexisNexis customers.It contains legal news headlines, short case notes and a concise list of newly released legislative information.
You can choose to customise your information if you are interested in particular subject areas or jurisdictions only.

Lexology a free service that provides tailored subject specific updates for articles written by leading Australian and international law firms.

If you know of any other relevant resources, please fee free to comment below.

ALLA(WA) Past President - Mawghan Elverd.
Senior Librarian, Jackson McDonald.


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