How it Works


How It Works. The Caselaw platform helps law students and lawyers build skills, reputation and knowledge for free through open, online legal argument. There are 2 systems:

In one system, the platform starts with simple case law research and uses crowdsourcing to flesh it out with references and annotations. In the other system, the Caselaw platform starts with legal queries and uses crowdsourcing to answer them with relevant cases and arguments.

The Caselaw platform gives new and aspiring lawyers unlimited opportunities to engage in real legal research, analysis and…

The Caselaw platform is a fast growing company that’s mixing up a righteous brew of social, enterpise, community, data, marketplace, competition and collaboration

a platform for “open online legal argument” for both law students and practicing lawyers.

The idea was that a user would post a legal issue to be “argued.” Other users would respond by posting cases they believed were relevant to the issue, together with their arguments for why a case applied. Still other users could then comment on a posted case and vote on whether a case was “On Point” or “Off Base.”

Users post legal issues to be argued. Other users respond by adding cases they believe are relevant, together with their arguments for why a case applies. Still others can comment and vote on whether it is “on point” or “off base.” A planned upgrade will allow users to add statutes and regulations.

(In the Caselaw platform lawyers can post questions others answer with case law.)

To encourage participation, the Caselaw platform adds a game to the mix. Users earn points based on the frequency, speed and quality of their answers. More points mean greater status and influence within the Caselaw platform, and users can opt to identify themselves.

The Caselaw platform may answer the question: What would it be like to discuss a legal position taken with thousands of other attorneys? Acquiring that breadth of opinion should allow the querying attorney to source the “best” (or, at least, “most popular” answer). Anyway, the Caselaw platform hopes it would. By offering users a chance to potentially commiserate with countless other lawyers in the world, the Caselaw platform represents a universal collegial space, the likes of which has never before been rendered so formally.

Asked and Answered: The Way It Works
The operation of the Caselaw platform is fairly straightforward. Questions are either purchased (for $100 each) or proposed (for free; but, the site editors determine whether the query is posted, based on relevance, uniqueness and other factors). Once User A has purchased a question, Users B through n answer; Users B through n vote for the answers as “On Point,” or “Off Base.”

Urportedly correct answers (those with the most up votes) rise in the queue, while purportedly incorrect answers (those with the most down votes) sink.

Queries and responses are limited to 200 characters plus citation to a court case; each answer must be tied to a case citation to provide an objectively verifiable source for the basis of the user’s opinion.

Users can create personal archives or libraries for specific issues, and can filter for queries they’ve submitted, answered or followed.

The Caselaw platform’ “Argue Issue” tool allows its users to vote or comment on discussion chains — again within that character limitation.

User accounts are associated with profiles. Profiles default to private (though they can be toggled to public), making the Caselaw platform a presumptively anonymous (to the extent that’s possible online for non-dogs) way to float ideas before running after them. For those so inclined, user profiles are made up of a bio, status and stats and portfolio (basically a recapture of the user’s activity on the service).

The Caselaw platform users link to case law (and soon, statutes and regulations, too) to support their statements. As of this writing, though, there’s no linking to law reviews or other secondary sources, which would help provide a wider view as to the question of law. Users must link out to all case information, short of citations referenced; there are no flags for caution within the Caselaw platform itself, as you would find within a traditional research engine. (Of course, this could be remedied via integration with a legal research provider.)

Users find open issues, cite good law, add relevant law, and vote other cites as “on point” or “off base.” Users earn reputation and status through high-quality cites, arguments, quality of \ answers, and votes. The Caselaw platform creates a personalized issue library for users based on the issues the individual argues, follows, and posts.

Isn’t this how legal work is approached–around issues, which lawyers answer by citing to recognized authorities such as court decisions, statutes, or regulations? These issues are the basic building blocks of legal analysis. The same is true with The Caselaw platform. Everything that happens on The Caselaw platform revolves around legal issues. Users can add new issues or answer open issues, and build portfolios of their responses to issues.

Why Submit an Issue?

Build your Knowledge
Start a Debate
Check your Work
Check other´s Work

For Law Students
Through the Caselaw platform you can earn reputation and create a portfolio that isn’t tied to GPA or school prestige. Answer Issues. Follow Issues. Dashboard. Profile.

For Law Schools

Help students translate principles and theory into analysis, just as they will in practice. Effeciency. Help students learn how to manage legal knowledge and …

For Lawyers

There’s so much information lawyers have (particularly in our own little fields of expertise) and we have so much to say about what’s happening, though we usually keep those thoughts to ourselves, either writing emails to listservs or blogging in our small interconnected blogospheres.

Wouldn’t it be great if those conversations happened publicly, around the text of actual opinions and statutes themselves?

Guides 101 Guide

We think the Caselaw platform can help. Just post your issue to the Caselaw platform, and then add the authorities you think are on point. See if others in the the Caselaw platform community agree.

We reward rapid, high-quality answers and votes. Climb our leaderboards and progress toward the next level. With each level, earn status and influence within …