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Free and Low Cost Resources for Legal Research: Advanced Google Searching

When you don't have access to Westlaw or Lexis, use these free or low cost resources for legal research

Search Operators

  • Full list
  • Exact phrase “”
  • Excluded words –
  • Similar words ~
  • Proximity operator
    • Around(n)
    • n = number between 1 and 32
  • Site specific
    • "global warming” site:edu
    • "global warming”
  • Cached versions of websites
    • cache:URL


Google Tools

Google Scholar Legal Opinions & Journals

Google Scholar includes opinions for U.S. state appellate and supreme court cases since 1950, U.S. federal district, appellate, tax and bankruptcy courts since 1923, and U.S. Supreme Court cases since 1791. In addition, it includes citations for cases cited by indexed opinions or journal articles which allows you to find influential cases (usually older or international) which are not yet online or publicly available.

Option to limit to specific court. Limit search to the title to find specific party names..

When searching for law reviews, the title is usually linked to a paid resource like HeinOnline or JSTOR.  To find free versions, click the link on the right, or the "View all versions" link under the citation and summary.

Save to "My Library" by clicking the  under an article or opinion.

Google Book Search

Use Find in a Library link to find a book in a local library.

Add books to your personal library.

Google Book Search

Google Patent Search

Google Patent Search

Google patents searches the PTO site and foreign patent registration sites.

Google Search Features

Tips for Searching Google