Digests of selected cases relating to media and communications law 1979 onwards, on the web site of barristers’ chambers 5 Raymond Buildings. Many have links to full text judgments and news stories about the cases.
BAILII (the British and Irish Legal Information Institute) provides the most comprehensive set of British and Irish primary legal materials freely available online. There are over 50 case law databases, covering both courts and major tribunals, listed in “BAILII Databases” under the following headings: England and Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Ireland, United Kingdom and Commonwealth, and Europe. Most databases contain predominantly recent material (especially from around 1997 onwards), but older decisions are being added on an ongoing basis along with new cases. To view the current coverage of any specific database select the link in the “BAILII Databases” listing. Recently added decisions, both recent cases and older ones, can also be accessed via the “Recent Decisions”, “Recent Additions”, and “New Cases of Interest” links on the front page. Where decisions have been reported by the Incorporated Council of Law Reporting a link to the ICLR web site is provided. There are various options for both basic and advanced searches, and a complete A-Z case name index.
The Year Books, precursors of modern law reports, are the principal source materials for the development of legal doctrines in the English courts from the late 13th century to 1535. Many have been printed, but others remain in manuscript form only. The database on this site, compiled by Professor David J. Seipp of Boston University, provides a searchable index to and paraphrase of printed Year Book reports. Also on the site is a list of old printed editions of Year Books, a list of manuscripts with locations, and an annotated bibliography of over 80 articles and books about the Year Books.
Based on data provided by Justis, this section of the CommonLII web site includes all of the reports from English Reports, covering the years 1220 to 1873, as pdf page images. The cases can be browsed by name or by year, or the database can be searched via the search options near the top of the page.
The Judgments section of the Courts and Tribunals Judiciary web site has selected judgments from the Court of Appeal, High Court and First-tier and Upper Tribunals, and also sentencing remarks from the Crown Court, judgments of district judges (magistrates’ courts), and County Court and Military Court judgments, late 2011 onwards. The database can be searched and filtered by court or jurisdiction. Judgments from 2009 to 2011 are available via an archived site.
This page on the Courts and Tribunals Judiciary web site links to decisions of all the chambers of the First-tier and Upper Tribunals.
The Department for Communities (DfC) is part of the Northern Ireland Executive. This section of the DfC’s site includes case law of the Social Security Commissioners and Child Support Commissioners for Northern Ireland 1960 onwards, via the NIDOC case law digest maintained by the DfC’s Decision Making Services. There are also electronic versions of Northern Ireland’s “Blue Volumes” and “Orange Volume”, containing collections of current social security and child support legislation, and sections devoted to housing law and social law.
The Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) is a superior court of record, with jurisdiction in England and Wales and Scotland, which deals with appeals from decisions of the Employment Tribunals, the Certification Officer and the Central Arbitration Committee. This section of the GOV.UK site has procedural information, guidance, and an unofficial consolidated version of the Employment Appeal Tribunal Rules 1993. Links are provided to relevant material elsewhere which includes full text judgments July 1999 to March 2017 on the Courts and Tribunals Judiciary site. Recent decisions are now published here on the GOV.UK site itself.
The First-tier Tribunal (Tax) was established on 1 April 2009, replacing four former separate tribunals – the General Commissioners of Income Tax, the VAT and Duties Tribunal, the Special Commissioners of Income Tax and the Section 704/706 Tribunal. The decisions database here on the Tribunals Judiciary site includes decisions of the First-tier Tribunal (Tax) and also of the defunct tribunals, 2002 onwards (searchable April 2003 onwards), with a few selected earlier decisions.
Full text judgments of the House of Lords delivered from 14 November 1996 to 30 July 2009 are archived in this section of the UK Parliament web site.
ICLR.3 is a service from the Incorporated Council of Law Reporting. Freely available material includes summarised reports of cases 2009 onwards heard by the Supreme Court, House of Lords, Privy Council, Court of Appeal, and all divisions of the High Court, as well as the Court of Justice of the European Communities, that are likely to appear in the Weekly Law Reports, The Business Law Reports, The Industrial cases Reports, and The Public and Third Sector Law Reports. These summaries are available via links to “WLR (D)” references. The database is updated daily Monday to Friday, and can also be used to find references for any case published by the ICLR 1865 onwards, including “index cards” with information about subject matter, appellate history, cases and legislation considered, and consideration of the case in subsequent decisions. There are links to transcripts on the BAILII web site where available. Access to the full text of all the ICLR’s series of law reports 1865 onwards, and to transcripts of all cases decided in the Court of Appeal and Administrative Court 1998 onwards, is available as a subscription service.
The Judicial Committee of the Privy Council (JCPC) is the court of final appeal for the UK’s overseas territories, crown dependencies (Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man), and military sovereign base areas, and for several Commonwealth countries. This web site, created following JCPC’s move from Downing Street to Parliament Square in 2009, includes details of JCPC’s role and powers; lists of relevant legislation; procedural information (forms, rules and practice directions); details of current cases and future sittings; live television coverage of hearings; and judgments (“Decided Cases”) November 2009 onwards. (For judgments from 1999 to August 2009 and selected key judgments before 1999 see either the BAILII web site (to which a link is provided) or archived content on the Privy Council Office site.)
This section of the web site of the judiciary in Northern Ireland includes a searchable database of judgments, judgment summaries, practice directions, and Lord Chief Justice’s directions 1984 onwards.
Subscription service. JustCite is a cross-referenced indexing service and citator to a wide range of UK and European legal information. This includes the Law Reports 1865 onwards, the All England Law Reports 1936 onwards, the English Reports, and a wide variety of other series of law reports; judgments from the Court of Appeal (Civil) 1950 onwards, Court of Appeal (Criminal) 1963 onwards, and High Court 1998 onwards; all UK legislation 1235 onwards, and several series of Irish, Scottish and Commonwealth law reports. For full details of coverage see the “Knowledge Base”. Links to full text on Justis, Lexis Library services or Westlaw are available, if subscriptions to these services are also held.
Subscription service. Full text UK case law available from Justis includes judgments from the Court of Appeal (Civil Division) 1951 onwards, Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) 1963 onwards, High Court 1998 onwards, House of Lords/Supreme Court 1996 onwards and Privy Council 1999 onwards. Other Justis products include Times Law Reports, International Law Reports, reports published by the Irish and Scottish law reporting Councils, and reports from various Commonwealth jurisdictions. A new product called JustisOne covers a large collection of judgments from the UK, Australia and Canada, plus the citator details originally available from JustCite. Further information about the series available and the coverage of each database is available via the “content” menu on the “Justis Library Support” page, which can be accessed from the search screen by selecting “Justis Help” and then “More Help”.
All final decisions of the Lands Tribunal and Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) 2000 onwards, in a searchable database.
LawCite is an automatically generated international legal case and journal article citator which is being developed at AustLII with the collaboration of other members of the Free Access to Law Movement. Over 18,000 law report and journal series are currently indexed, and the database includes over five million cases and law journal articles from around the world. Emphasis is on common law countries but this is gradually being extended to include civil law jurisdictions. Decisions are searchable by citation, parties, court, jurisdiction and date, and search results include a link to the full text of the case where available, together with details of legislation cited, cases and articles cited, and cases and articles referring to the case.
Subscription service. Lawtel contains summaries of reported and unreported cases 1980 onwards, and selected earlier cases, with links to full text transcripts online wherever available. Full text of other cases can be obtained by applying to Lawtel. Cases are put online within 24 hours of judgment being given. A separate database – Lawtel Personal Injury – includes an update service plus case law and articles, and is also updated daily. The Quantum Reports database goes back to 1980. Major personal injury cases are included as are a wide range of unreported cases from the County Court.
Subscription service. Coverage includes full text of All England Law Reports 1936 onwards, All England Commercial Cases 1999 onwards, All England Law Reports European Cases 1995-2015, All England Reporter (All ER (D)) October 1997 onwards, All England Law Reports Reprint (covering reports from 1558-1935), a wide variety of other series of law reports including the Incorporated Council of Law Reporting’s Law Reports, and an archive of full text official transcripts 1980 onwards. Site content is updated daily.
The Northern Ireland Courts and Tribunals Service (NICTS), an agency of Northern Ireland’s Department of Justice, administers the courts of Northern Ireland, comprising the Supreme Court, county courts, magistrates’ courts, coroners’ courts, and certain tribunals. This section of the Department of Justice site has information on the work of NICTS, including complaints procedures, but it excludes judicial decisions, which may be found on the Judiciary NI site.
This comprehensive site for restitution law resources was produced by Professor Steve Hedley of University College Cork. It has full text judgments in restitution cases from England and Wales from 1990 – 2010, some as links to other sites and others as documents on the site. There are also links to cases and legislation from many other jurisdictions, links to journal articles and abstracts, links to blog posts, and a general introduction to the subject. Note: as from October 2011 the site has not been updated.
Rightsnet is maintained by the charity Lasa (Lasa Charity UK Limited). It provides information, advice and news on social welfare law in the UK, principally through its news and caselaw subscription service. The freely accessible Resources section however contains links to key online sources for legislation, official guidance, manuals, case law, forms and calculators. Of particular note amongst the case law links is a “Commissioners decisions archive” of almost 5000 decisions in pdf format, from the late 1940s onwards, which are mostly unavailable elsewhere online. They include decisions formerly available from Commissioner Howell’s web site, the Office of the Social Security Commissioners’ archive, and the Child Poverty Action Group.
The Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service (SCTS) is responsible for the administration of the courts and tribunals of Scotland. These include the Court of Session, High Court of Justiciary, Sheriff Appeal Court, Sheriff Courts, Justice of the Peace Courts, Upper Tribunal for Scotland, First-tier Tribunal for Scotland, and Office of the Public Guardian. The site also provides brief details of other courts. Court of Session opinions are available 1999 onwards, as are judgments of the High Court and Sheriff Court. Judgments of the Sheriff Appeal Court established in 2015 are added as they become available. Opinions pages are updated daily at 2 pm. Court rules, practice notes, guidance notes and forms will be found under “Rules and Practice”. The home pages carries news relating to the administration of justice, in blog format.
The “Decided Cases” section of the UK Supreme Court’s web site contains the court’s judgments, October 2009 onwards, published after they are handed down. Earlier judgments are available on the House of Lords web site.
This section of the site produced by David Swarbrick, consultant with Wrigley Claydon Solicitors, provides digests of cases up to the end of 2004, browsable by subject. It is a selection from the full Lawindexpro database, a subscription service with over 389,000 case listings and links to over 204,000 full text decisions, updated daily.
Subscription service. The case content of Westlaw UK includes full text of the The Law Reports and other Incorporated Council of Law Reporting series; English Reports; Session Cases; and many of Sweet & Maxwell’s specialised series including Criminal Appeal Reports. There are also transcripts of unreported cases with extensive coverage 1980 onwards and some earlier transcripts. The service is updated daily.