I want to understand the law and how it affects me.
Self-Help information is a type of legal help that can allow you to better understand the law of your case. Self-Help information includes:
- Information on Statutes
- Information about Cases
- Articles summarizing an area of the law
- Answers to frequently asked questions
- Do-it-yourself court forms,
- Interactive tools, and more.
To be reliable, self-help information should be written by a lawyer.
Is self-help information a substitute for getting the help of a lawyer?
No. Self-help information is not a replacement for the value of advice or other help from a lawyer. Self-help information is only a starting point. To take the next step and be sure how the law affects your case's particular facts you owe it to yourself to at least get legal advice from a lawyer.
Where can I find self-help information online?
Google Scholar is a free service you can use to search through legal articles, and even case law online. With Google Scholar you can do free legal research online. Please click the links below to learn more about doing legal research on Google Scholar and to go to the Google Scholar Website.
Some of the Texas State Law Library’s databases and e-books can be accessed online as long as you have a Texas State Law Library card, number, and password. If you are a Texas resident you can register for a library card for free and get access.
Lexis Nexis and Westlaw are online fee-based legal research databases. These are the databases lawyers use to conduct legal research online. Some Law Libraries offer free access to Lexis Nexis and/or Westlaw at specific computers at their libraries. Make sure to call ahead and find out if the law library offers free Lexis Nexis or Westlaw access. Please click the links below for tutorials on using Lexis Nexis and Westlaw.
Where can I find self-help information in my community?
Keep In Mind
Even the most reliable book at a local law library or website might contain information that is out of date. Law Libraries and reliable websites work hard to stay up-to-date, but not each and every piece of information can be 100% guaranteed to be accurate. That is one of the many reasons that self-help information is not a replacement for a lawyer.
After you review self-help information it is a good idea to get legal advice from a lawyer to better understand your issues and know what steps to take next.
Lastly, it is important to understand that when it comes to websites that charge fees for information and or forms, that not all information on the internet is reliable. You should be extra careful when getting information from places online that charge money for the information and/or forms.