Research guides

Expert Witnesses

Research a Specific Witness

Oftentimes it is important to find as much information about a particular witness as possible. This includes finding his or her curriculum vitae, articles written by or about the witness, and cases in which the witness has testified. The sources below can be used as a general checklist when researching an expert witness. When available, both Jenkins' membership databases and freely available search engines have been included.

The sources to use when doing expert witness research vary depending on the type of expert he/she is. For example, it only makes sense to search PubMed if the expert has a medical background.

Geographic location can be an important factor when conducting searches. Some experts practice in both the United States and Canada. Additionally, some experts present at overseas conferences or have written in international journals. This should be taken into consideration when doing searches, especially news and journal article searches.

See our YouTube channel for over one hundred 3-5 minute videos with tips on using many of the resources listed below. These videos were created by Dan Giancaterino, Jenkins' Education Services Manager.

General Search Engines

General search engines, like Bing and Google, can find a wide array of material. Search engines use algorithms to find and display results. Different search engines, and even the same search engine accessed from different locations, may retrieve slightly different results. Searches can be modified and/or restricted by using the advanced search feature.

Social Media

Social media technologies come in a variety of forms, including networking sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, blog sites like Blogger, Tumblr, and WordPress, wikis and collaborative projects like Wikipedia, content communities like YouTube, and more. Certain social media technologies give the content creator privacy options. This means content may not be visible to all users.

Invisible Web / Deep Web

Not all information freely available online can be found using traditional search engines like Bing or Google. A lot of information is buried underneath the surface, making it difficult for traditional search engines to retrieve it. Information in databases, catalogs, and other places is not easily accessed by search engines. This is commonly referred to as the invisible or deep web. For more information, see Wikipedia's Deep Web (search) article.

There are ways of searching out this information. Many of the sources included in this tab are ways of finding information from the invisible web. Below are three additional examples that could be used when researching an expert witness.

Colleges and Universities
Most colleges and universities have information regarding faculty members on their website. This information can include short bios, curriculum vitae, publications, research projects, class lists and syllabi, and videos.

Companies
Some companies list their employees on their website. The extent of information about employees on a website varies from company to company.

Healthcare Facilities
Healthcare facility websites often have directories of their doctors which may include photographs, contact information, professional certifications, educational background, and area of expertise

For more information regarding the invisible web and how to search it, see Don MacLeod, Google and the Deep Web, in How to Find Out Anything 29-39 (2012).

Research Tip

A search on Bing or Google on a specific topic may bring up individual websites or databases to search.

Try using Google's Advanced Search and limit the search to a specific company's or organization's URL. Though this is not the same as searching the invisible web, it may bring about more relevant results than a basic search.

Books

Google Books
For more search options, use the Advanced Search feature.

Jenkins' Catalog
This is helpful when the person has a legal background. Catalog entries for publications from the Pennsylvania Bar Institute (PBI), the Practising Law Institute (PLI), and others will oftentimes include the chapter titles and authors. For more search options, use the Advanced Search feature.

Worldcat
This is helpful when the person is listed as the author or editor. For more search options, use the Advanced Search feature.

Research Tip

Jenkins' Interlibrary Loan Department works with other institutions to locate and deliver a variety of books and articles. Fees do apply. For more information, contact us at 215.574.7933 or documents@jenkinslaw.org.

Cases

Lexis
Available on the library's Lexis computers. Search String Example: John w/3 Smith

Westlaw
Available on the library's Westlaw computers. Search String Example: adv: John w/3 Smith

Bloomberg Law
Available on the library's Bloomberg Law computers. Search String Example: adv: John w/3 Smith

Fastcase
Member database available for law firms with less than 50 attorneys. Search String Example: John w/3 Smith

Google Scholar
Be sure to switch the search radio button to "Case law". For more search options, including jurisdiction and date restrictions, use the Advanced Search feature. The Advanced Search feature can be accessed by clicking on the down arrow found in the basic search box.

Research Tip

Other subscription services like Daubert Tracker, Expert Witness on Demand (formerly IDEX), and TrialSmith collect court documents related to expert witnesses, including briefs and deposition testimony. Access to TrialSmith is restricted to plaintiff attorneys.

Congressional Materials

govinfo U.S. Government Printing Office
Includes Congressional Documents, Hearings, and Reports. Available dates vary between document types. For more search options, use the Advanced Search feature.

ProQuest Congressional
Member database available for all Jenkins' members. ProQuest Congressional provides access to U.S. legislative materials. This is helpful if a person was a witness in a Congressional Hearing or the author of a CRS Report. For more search options, use the Advanced Search feature. Search String Example: John NEAR/3 Smith

Jury Verdicts & Settlements

Verdicts and settlements are not published in court reporters and they cannot be found when searching sources based on case law.

Use our Verdicts & Settlements guide to find verdict and settlement sources available at Jenkins.

Medical

Directory of Medical Experts Lewis L. Laska
Library has 1994 - present.  A directory of medical experts as reported in Medical Malpractice Verdict, Settlement & Experts

PubMed
For more search options, use the Advanced Search feature.

Research Tip

Jenkins' Interlibrary Loan Department works with other institutions to locate and deliver a variety of books and articles, including medical publications. Fees do apply. For more information, contact us at 215.574.7933 or documents@jenkinslaw.org.

News

Google News
For more search options, use the Advanced Search feature. The Advanced Search feature can be accessed by clicking on the down arrow found in the basic search box.

Lexis Legal News
Available on the library's Lexis computers. Includes All Mealey's Publications NewsBriefs (1993-present), Pennsylvania Bar Association Quarterly (1994-present), and The Pennsylvania Lawyer (1995-present).

NewsBank
Member database available for all Jenkins' members. Search world news for the most comprehensive coverage as many experts present at conferences overseas. Search String Example: John NEAR3 Smith

ProQuest Congressional
Member database available to all Jenkins members. Includes the Washington Post (1997-present), Roll Call newspaper (1998-present), and CQ Transcripts (1995-present). Found with Political News. Search String Example: John NEAR/3 Smith

Research Tip

Some newspapers have online access with search capabilities and archived editions. Some online newspapers are subscription only.

Additional news sources on Lexis, Westlaw, and in print may be available to Jenkins' librarians. Research and document delivery charges may apply. Contact Research Services at 215.574.1505 or research@jenkinslaw.org for more information.

Patents

USPTO Patent Application Full-Text and Image Database U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
This is helpful when the person has an engineering, science, or technological background. Consists of the full text of US published applications, including all bibliographic data, such as the inventor's name, the published application's title, and the assignee's name, as well as the abstract, the full description of the invention, and the claims. For more search options, use the Advanced Search feature. All of the words (text) in the publication are searchable.

USPTO Patent Full-Text and Image Database U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
This is helpful when the person has an engineering, science, or technological background. Includes information about all US patents (including utility, design, reissue, plant patents and SIR documents) from the first patent issued in 1790 to the most recent issue week. For more search options, use the Advanced Search feature. See the Frequently-Asked Questions for more information.

Periodicals

General OneFile
Member database available for all Jenkins' members. Covers a variety of topics, including business, computers, current events, economics, education, environmental issues, health care, hobbies, humanities, law, literature, art, politics, science, social science, sports, technology, and many general interest topics. Publications vary in coverage dates. Publications vary in index and full text coverage.

Google Scholar
This is helpful if the person has an academic background. For more search options, use the Advanced Search feature, accessed by clicking on the down arrow found in the basic search box. Can switch the default search radio button from "Articles" to "Case law" if the person has a legal background.

HeinOnline
Member database available to most Jenkins members. This is helpful if the person has a legal background. The release of new content for some publications is delayed due to the title's contract with HeinOnline. Coverage for most titles goes back to inception.

LegalTrac
Member database available for all Jenkins' members. This is helpful if the person has a legal background. Publications vary in coverage dates. Publications vary in index and full text coverage.

Lexis Law Reviews
Available on the library's Lexis computers. Jenkins' subscription is limited to Pennsylvania and New Jersey law schools and includes law reviews and journals from Temple University, University of Pennsylvania, Villanova University, Rutgers University, Seton Hall University, and more. Selected full-text coverage, 1982-present

Westlaw Law Reviews & Journals
Available on the library's Westlaw computers. Includes a wide selection of law reviews and bar journals.

Research Tip

Databases like HighWire, Ingentaconnect, and PsycARTICLES® allow the user to search for free but charge for document retrieval.

Jenkins' Interlibrary Loan Department works with other institutions to locate and deliver a variety of books and articles, including business, medical, and technical publications, as well as conference proceedings, news articles, and more. Fees do apply. For more information, contact us at 215.574.7933 or documents@jenkinslaw.org.

Professional Associations and Conference Proceedings

Conferences hosted by professional associations frequently include research so new that it has not yet made it into scholarly peer-reviewed publications. Materials available for these proceedings vary by association and conference. Conference proceedings may be published in their entirety, the papers presented may be published individually, or authors may publish their papers through another source. Some conferences only publish abstracts, and some conferences don't publish anything.

Because of the variety of ways conference proceedings are published, there is no one database to search all conference proceedings. Google Scholar may be a good place to start as it searches scholarly papers that may include conference materials. It may also be beneficial to contact academic libraries as many of them have access to multiple databases that including conference proceedings. Academic libraries may have access restrictions and we recommend contacting them before visiting for their most up-to-date policy information.

Those who have citation information for a conference proceeding should start their research using the sources listed in the Periodical box above.

Research Tip

Jenkins' Interlibrary Loan Department works with other institutions to locate and deliver a variety of books and articles, including business, medical, and technical publications, as well as conference proceedings, news articles, and more. Fees do apply. For more information, contact us at 215.574.7933 or documents@jenkinslaw.org.

Jenkins' Research Services

Jenkins' Research Services
Jenkins' Research Services can do expert witness research for our members. Research can include ProQuest Dialog searches if needed. Research and document delivery rates do apply. Please contact our librarians at 215.574.1505 or research@jenkinslaw.org for more information.