The Volokh Conspiracy
Mostly law professors | Sometimes contrarian | Often libertarian | Always independent
How to Read a Legal Opinion
A guide for new law students -- and others.
With law schools set to open their doors in a few weeks to a new 1L class, it's time for my annual posting of my 2007 essay, How to Read a Legal Opinion: A Guide for New Law Students. As the abstract explains:
This essay is designed to help new law students prepare for the first few weeks of class. It explains what judicial opinions are, how they are structured, and what law students should look for when reading them.
I'm told that some non-lawyers also have found the essay valuable as an introduction to reading cases. To download, just follow the link and then click on "Download this Paper."