Free Foreign Legal Websites II
Continued from last week’s blog, today’s blog will introduce one of most useful, yet free online resources I have encountered; GlobaLex. Whereas GLIN from last week provides legal documents such as, official texts of laws, regulations, judicial decisions, and other complementary legal sources directly on its website, GlobaLex provides more general legal information on country of your interest and provides links where you can find relevant legal documents. So, GLIN is a place to go to when you know what you are looking for and GlobaLex is a place to go to when you first start the research of a country and are not certain what you need to look for.
Globalex is a highly credible website published by the Hauser Global Law School Program at NYU School of Law. It is constantly updated and shows when it was last updated on the main page of the website. It is committed to the dissemination of high-level international, foreign, and comparative law research tools in order to accommodate the needs of an increasingly global educational and practicing legal world.
Now, I will briefly explain how to look for information on GlobaLex and what kind of contents it provides with emphasis on foreign law research. When you visit GlobaLex, the main page will have four headings: (1) International law research, (2) Comparative law research, (3) Foreign law research, and (4) Tools for building foreign, comparative and international law collections. To navigate, click on a section heading and scroll down the page. International law guides are alphabetized by subject, which includes human rights, international commercial law, international criminal law, international trade, international health, etc. You may click on each subject to read an article, which provides comprehensive guide on that subject with links to various websites holding relevant information. Comparative law guides are alphabetized by article title, and topics include comparative civil procedure, comparative criminal procedure, a comparative approach to immigration law, etc. Again, you may click on each topic and it will provide comprehensive guide on that researching in that field. Foreign law guides are listed alphabetically by country name, covering 139 jurisdictions. When you click on the name of country, it will provide comprehensive legal information on that nation; government information, legislative process, constitution, the judiciary and other research links. This information is prepared by scholars well known in their respective fields and are constantly updated to reflect any changes made. Because it is prepared by different scholars, depth of information provided varies from country to country. It is a great way to start a research as it provides country’s general legal system and helps you to progress your research by providing various links, such as legal guide and various agencies. The last heading, Tools for building foreign, comparative and international law collections, provides various sources you may use to gather foreign, comparative and international law information. It doesn’t provide information directly, but, I recommend you to take a look at these articles if you are interested in foreign law research as it provides a great sources for conducting foreign legal research.
In summary, GlobaLex is a very useful website, especially for lawyers with no prior knowledge on country they are to conduct legal research. Two sources that I have introduced so far, GLIN and GlobaLex, may be used together for more convenient foreign law research. I will introduce yet, another very helpful free source next week.