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Caselaw Access Project

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Readers with an interest in the U.S. legal system may want to take a look at the Caselaw Access Project (CAP), a massive digitization project that makes 360 years of American court cases publicly available online. This large database was created "by digitizing roughly 40 million pages of court decisions contained in roughly 40,000 bound volumes owned by the Harvard Law School Library," adding up to approximately 6.7 million unique cases with the earliest from 1658 and the most recent from 2018. Visitors can access this database through the CAP's open-access API, which the project states is "the best option for anybody interested in programmatically accessing our metadata, full-text search, or individual cases." CAP also offers a bulk download option for readers who need a large collection of cases. It should be noted that, while all CAP's data is freely available to the public, accessing the full text of a case requires registering for an account and at the time of this write-up visitors are limited to 500 cases per day. Launched in October 2018, CAP is the result of a collaboration between the Harvard Law School's Library Innovation Lab and Ravel Law, a legal research company owned by Lexis-Nexis.
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Scout Publication
Date of Scout Publication 2019-04-19
Archived Scout Publication URL https://scout.wisc.edu/report/2019/0419

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