Important! Please Read
The information on this site is provided as a service and should not be construed as legal or non-legal advice.
Users needing legal advice are strongly encouraged to seek the services of a qualified attorney.
How do I find a Lawyer?
Find-A-Lawyer is the Colorado Bar Association's Online Attorney Member Directory. It is one way you can begin your search for a Colorado lawyer.
The directory allows you to search by practice area, name, and location.
Scholarly information at your fingertips.
With Google Scholar you can "search across many disciplines and sources: articles, theses, books, abstracts and court opinions, from academic publishers, professional societies, online repositories, universities and other web sites."
There is a great deal of legal and legally related information available for free online. Anyone with a computer and an Internet connection can find legal information. However, online research can be frustrating, and there are a number of pitfalls that must be avoided.
For example, you must always be certain that the resource you are using is reliable and the information is up-to-date. Also, you may find free databases more difficult to use than commercial ones, information may be limited or may not include useful editorial additions, and you may need to check several resources to find everything you need.
But, if done with care, the benefits of doing at least some of your legal research online can greatly outweigh the drawbacks. For those knowing how and where to look, doing at least some legal research tasks online can save both time and money.
The purpose of this guide is to help you become a better online researcher. The guide identifies key websites, helpful techniques, and pitfalls to avoid. Please remember that this guide is not exhaustive, and like any other resource, you should verify any information you find before relying on it in any legal matter.
Searching the Web with Google
Google provides an easy to use search engine for finding information on the Internet.
For example, you could search for the terms "Colorado" and "legal forms" to pull up some of the resources that are listed elsewhere in this guide.
When using Google, or any other search engine, it is important to remember that you will find both reliable and unreliable sources of information.
The following questions will help you evaluate the reliability of information you find online.
Is it an official government website? State and federal government websites generally include reliable information. Examples include websites hosted by state and federal agencies, courts, legislatures, etc. If the site's domain name ends in .gov, you can likely trust the information you find.
- Does the website provide information about its creators and its purpose? If detailed information about the site’s purpose and its creators is not provided, treat the site and its information with suspicion.
- Is it a website for a well known non-profit or non-governmental organization (NGO)? Like government websites, well known non-profits and NGOs generally have reliable websites. If the site’s domain name ends in .org, you can probably trust the information you find.
- Is contact information provided? Reputable organizations will provide a phone number or email address so that you can contact them for more information. If contact information is vague or is not included, be wary of the resources on that site.
- Does the website’s content show an obvious bias or agenda? Information contained on websites designed to influence opinion or cater to a specific group, political party, or movement, may or may not be reliable. For these types of websites, it is advisable to further research your topic to verify the accuracy and veracity of the information you’ve found.
- Is the information current? Can you tell when the information was last updated? A good website will make this obvious. If you can’t tell, it’s better to look elsewhere.