News and information useful to Cleveland-Marshall College of Law students, faculty and staff.

This Just in: The Law of Judicial Precedent

Bryan Garner, the editor of Black’s Law Dictionary and co-author of a number of other books on the law is back with this hefty tome on judicial precedent. The forward for the book is written by US Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer and there is a chapter by another Justice Neil Gorsuch.  The rest of the contributors are all long experienced state and federal judges.  Thorough as you would expect from a text written by  experienced jurists, the volume is still easy to read and flows well despite  extensive annotations.  In depth topics covered are: the nature and authority of judicial precedents, the weight of decisions, practicalities of stare decisis, the law of the case, federal doctrine and practice, state law in federal court, state law doctrine and practice, foreign precedents, and arbitration considerations.


Faculty Interviewed for Tonight’s Local News

 C|M|Law will be featured on News Channel 5s broadcast tonight at 6pm. Professor Brian Ray was interviewed about internet bots. What is a bot? According to C|Net, “a bot is an application that performs an automated task, such as setting an alarm, telling you the weather or searching online.” The tasks that bots perform range from helpful, to annoying, to malicious. Bots crawl the web, finding new websites and updating search engines, and helping users order items or find discounts. There are even Lawyer-Bots. Bots can also pose cybersecurity threats, spamming your social media with ads and other junk, tricking you into thinking that you’re interacting with another person, and spreading misinformation or even viruses. For further reading about bots, check out these articles from The Atlantic, Techopedia, and Venturebeat.

For more on cybersecurity, check out C|M|Law’s Center for Cybersecurity and Privacy Protection, and the C|M|Law Library’s Cyberlaw Guide.

Help for Law Students with Substance Abuse Problems

As a law student, you’re probably all too aware that the stress of law school can lead to mental health issues like depression, anxiety, even suicide. One of the major risk factors of mental health disorders is substance abuse. According to the ABA Substance Abuse & Mental Health Toolkit, the substance most frequently abused by law students is alcohol, with prescription drug abuse also on the rise.

A 2014 Survey of Law Student Well Being reported that

  • 43% of law students reported binge drinking at least once in the last two weeks
  • 22% reported binge drinking two or more times in the prior two weeks
  • Over 14% reported the use of some prescription drug without a prescription in the prior year.

Help is available for alcohol and drug abuse problems on campus through the CSU Counseling Center. Another service that you might not realize is an option for you is OLAP, the Ohio Lawyers Assistance Program. OLAP doesn’t just help lawyers and judges – their services are available to law students, too. OLAP can work to diagnose a substance abuse problem, offer recommendations, interventions, monitoring and support, and support for concerned family and friends.  OLAP also offers a self-test that runs you through some of the “tell-tale signs” of alcohol and drug abuse.

Live & Online Law Library Legal Research Seminars

This Spring 2018 semester, the Law Library is conducting two live Legal Research Seminars for C|M|Law students.  We are also offering many Seminars online, via the Westlaw TWEN platform, for students to complete at their convenience.  Remember, your Seminar points are good for the entire time you are here at C|M|Law.  When you earn 100 Seminar points, you receive a Legal Research Letter of Recognition & Digital Badge, for posting to your LinkedIn page.  Students can earn multiple Letters & Digital Badges.

The two live Legal Research Seminars will take place 4:50pm-5:50pm in Law Library Room A059.  Both are a must see if you plan to be working this summer!

  • Ohio Legal Research “Crash Course” – Thursday, March 29th – We’ll examine key Ohio research resources, as well as discuss effective strategies & best practices for their use. (25 points)
  • Getting Ready to Clerk – Thursday, April 5th – Legal practitioners will discuss research projects done by clerks & new associates – how projects are assigned, typical projects, and feedback to expect. (25 points)

The online Legal Research Seminars are available via the Westlaw TWEN platform:

  • Starting Research with Secondary Sources – Why recreate the wheel? Examine how secondary sources explain and analyze “the law,” as well as cite primary authority.
  • Terms & Connectors Searching – Explore the power of search techniques beyond natural language searching. Understand the basics of combining terms & phrases in effective search statements.
  • Westlaw Overview (and) Lexis Advance Overview – Leap beyond Google and start to harness these two legal research giants. Learn big box & pre-filtered searching, as well as how to print/download/email search results.
  • Shepard’s (and) KeyCite – Why is a red stop sign different from a yellow flag, and what should you do when you see either one? Examine reports in Shepard’s & KeyCite, and discover the power of these legal citator services.
  • Bluebooking – You and The Bluebook can be friends. For faster legal drafting, review how to effectively apply citation & style rules, and abbreviation & jurisdiction tables.
  • Bioethics Resources & Scholarly Writing – Examine a wide array of bioethics resources, and learn how these resources can be used to select a paper topic and conduct effective research on that topic.

Additional online Seminars will be added during the Spring 2018 semester.  You earn points for an online Seminar by correctly answering 3/4 of the questions on that Seminar‘s quiz.  Points vary per online Seminar.  [You cannot earn points for attending the same Seminar topic twice.]

Law Library Legal Research Seminars are for C|M|Law students, including our MLS and LLM students.  For additional information, contact Laura Ray, Outreach & Instructional Services Librarian, 216-687-6880,

This Just In: Armed in America

Armed in America: A History of Gun Rights from Colonial Militias to Concealed Carry, is a timely book on the subject of guns in the U.S. and gun control. The author, Patrick J. Charles, is a 2009 C|M|Law alumnus.

Charles gave a recent talk on this subject, which is available on YouTube and was posted by the National Constitutional Center.

Charles’ law review article on the topic was also cited in a 7th Circuit decision in 2012.