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Why do legal professionals need to understand the elements of researching both primary and secondary sources - Essay Example

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Legal professionals need to understand the elements of researching both Primary and Secondary Sources so that they would know which information they should look for in a research. It is important to make a distinction between the two in order to research effectively. As their…
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Why do legal professionals need to understand the elements of researching both primary and secondary sources
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Teacher Why do legal professionals need to understand the elements of researching both primary and secondary sources? Legal professionals need to understand the elements of researching both Primary and Secondary Sources so that they would know which information they should look for in a research. It is important to make a distinction between the two in order to research effectively. As their name suggests, primary sources are the main basis of research while secondary sources complements the primary sources.
Primary sources concerns about the legal system in the United States. The legal system is actually “three parallel systems -- federal law, state law, and administrative law” (University of Cornell). These primary law of each of each system came from three sources which are the laws, cases and adjudications in the courts of the United States. The example of statutes are composed of the Constitution of the United States and the law passed in Congress. Example of cases on the other hand are opinions about jurisprudence issued by courts while adjudications are administrative agency materials (University of Cornell).
Secondary sources are needed because they determine what law applies to the research. In essence, secondary sources are category of legal materials that is not considered primary source or information beyond the Constitution, laws and opinions of the court. The example of secondary sources could include but not limited to legal encyclopedias, treatises, legal periodicals and practice materials (University of Cornell). They may also include scientific journals and other research. Secondary sources are helpful materials that are a “rich source of citations” to the primary resources.
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"Basics of Legal Research." Basics of Legal Research. Web. 12 Dec. 2014. Read More
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