Posted by Law Campus Admin on the 30th September 2011.
This week I’m blogging about how lexis services can help you with mooting, after a request from a student. The start of a new academic year always fills us with big ideas of what we can take on in addition to work for ‘school’, and when the reality hits it usually collides with an assessment, or a time when you haven’t slept properly for a week! I hope this short guide will help to ease the pain, and make mooting what it is supposed to be-a truly enjoyable experience.
Here are some mooting blogs I wrote earlier:
When you first receive your moot problem, you may need to refresh yourself on an area of law you already know about, or start looking at a topic that is entirely new. Whatever your moot is about, the best place to start is Halsbury’s Laws of England and Wales which can be found either in hard copy, or on LexisLibrary. Run a search, or browse through Halsbury’s to find succinct paragraphs which direct you to authority and explain every proposition of English law in a practical way.
There is a clue in the title of Halsbury’s (the ‘England and Wales’ bit) that tells you Halsbury’s might not be best for International moots. In these cases, try starting with the specialist practitioner text on the topic, which can be found through the ‘Sources’ tab, then follow up with your authority from Commonwealth countries or the U.S. and E.U. via the International Cases page on LexisLibrary .
Once you have an idea of the basic law, you will want to look into it in more detail. There are numerous texts available on LexisLibrary, such as the Butterworths series (including P.I., Property, Employment and more), Rayden & Jackson (Family), or Blackstone’s Criminal Practice. Bear in mind-if your University doesn’t subscribe to certain books, you won’t be able to see them.
You may also have access to a service mostly used by practicing lawyers called LexisPSL. This will give you really useful practice notes, and again link you to cases and legislation where relevant.
Respect for Authority:
Having researched your point thoroughly you then need to back your points up with case law or legislation. In moots (certainly the smaller competitions) authority is usually case law. LexisLibrary has case law dating back to the Middle Ages, and legislation from Magna Carta onwards, both of which are updated every day. You can also check that your authority is still good law (i.e. hasn’t been overruled or repealed) via Casesearch and the Status Snapshot.
Following the Practice Direction there is a hierarchy for which law reports you should use:
If a case is reported in the official Law Reports published by the Incorporated Council of Law Reporting for England and Wales that report should be cited. These are the most authoritative reports; they contain a summary of argument; and they are the most readily available. If a case is not (or not yet) reported in the official Law Reports but is reported in the Weekly Law Reports or the All England Law Reports that report should be cited. If a case is not reported in any of these series of reports, a report in any of the specialist series of reports may be cited.
 2 All ER 490 at 520
Skeletons and speeches:
After all the research you should have a firm grip on what you want to say. Then you have to write it down in the form of a skeleton argument, and make notes on how you will put it to the judge. These are personal tasks, and often depend on the rules of your competition.
If you have any more questions don’t forget you can email firstname.lastname@example.org