Wisconsin State Law Library

Serving the Wisconsin Supreme Court and State of Wisconsin

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Library Highlights

March 20, 2019

National Library Week, April 8-12

Join us for National Library Week events, from April 8-12, 2019. This year's theme is Libraries = Strong Communities, and we couldn't agree more with this statement. From providing vital research sources, to helping individuals navigate the court system for the first time, we are proud to serve the Court System and the people of Wisconsin.



Public Records
Monday, April 8, 11 - Noon
Thursday, April 11, 11 - Noon
Location: David T. Prosser Jr. Library rare book room
Get an overview of the history of Wisconsin’s public records law, understand top research sources, and learn where to find public records on individuals and businesses. Discover business entity records, liens, real estate records, and more. We'll help you find online and offline government agency sources for commonly-sought Wisconsin public records.
FREE. 1 CLE credit. Register Online | Print Registration Form
Dig in to Dockets and Court Documents
Monday, April 8, Noon - 1 p.m.
Thursday, April 11, Noon - 1 p.m.
Location: David T. Prosser Jr. Library rare book room

Learn how to research trial court dockets using free and low-cost tools available on the Internet, such as Wisconsin Circuit Court Access and PACER. Then survey powerful databases available free at the library. Learn how to locate verdicts and settlements via Westlaw and discover full text court filings using Westlaw and Bloomberg Law’s Litigation Intelligence Center.
FREE. 1 CLE credit. Register Online | Print Registration Form

Watch for blog posts and Facebook updates throughout the week on how we reach out to our Wisconsin community, and how you can use our services and collection.

Do you have a story to tell about using one of our three libraries? Send an email to carol.hassler@wicourts.gov.

March 13, 2019

Wisconsin State Budget Process

The Governor’s formal announcement of the biennial budget to the Legislature and people of Wisconsin signals the start of budget season in Wisconsin. Use this research guide to understand the process or to stay up to date on the latest changes.

Start with the budget drafts and Budget Index Report on the Wisconsin State Legislature's website, then continue your research with administrative reports, legislative agency analysis, and opinions and news coverage.


Ask a librarian for help finding information or analysis, and use our State Budget research guide to begin your research.

March 12, 2019

Job Posting: Library Assistant - Circulation Desk LTE

The Wisconsin State Law Library seeks a detail-oriented LTE (Limited Term Employee) Library Assistant, 22.5 hours per week. Applicants must have morning availability; Monday through Friday 8 AM to 12:30 PM.


Duties include staffing the circulation desk, filing looseleaf services, shelving, moving and shifting book collections, creating invoices, issuing library cards, and other collection maintenance activities.

Skills include excellent customer service skills in person and on the phone, working in the circulation system and other computer tasks, cash handling, ability to follow written directions and to do multiple tasks with a high degree of accuracy and attention to detail.

Pay is $11/hour.

Location: The library is located on bus lines, just off the Capitol Square at 120 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. in Madison.

To apply, please submit a cover letter and resume to elspeth.gordon@wicourts.gov which must include your hours available to work. (Emails preferred.)

March 4, 2019

WSLL @ Your Service March 2019

The March issue of WSLL @ Your Service is now online. Your comments are welcome! Please direct them to the editor, Carol Hassler.

In this issue:


The Bloomberg Law Tax Practice Center gathers Bloomberg BNA resources in one website. It's a great way to keep current with federal and state tax law developments. Read more


Our featured new titles this month are Legal Aspects of Health Care Administration and Advising the Evolving Family. Don't forget to check out our full March new book list. Read more


Decluttering your electronic accessories may seem like a monumental task, but this article can help you to find guidance and disposal options near you. Read more


We're already making plans for National Library Week in April and we invite you to register for our upcoming classes! Read more


Enjoy the beautiful exterior and detailed interior of the Dodge County Courthouse at sundown. Read more

February 27, 2019

Job Posting: Library Assistant - Circulation Desk LTE

The Wisconsin State Law Library seeks a detail-oriented LTE (Limited Term Employee) Library Assistant, 22.5 hours per week. Applicants must have morning availability; Monday through Friday 8 AM to 12:30 PM.

Duties include staffing the circulation desk, filing looseleaf services, shelving, moving and shifting book collections, creating invoices, issuing library cards, and other collection maintenance activities.

Skills include excellent customer service skills in person and on the phone, working in the circulation system and other computer tasks, cash handling, ability to follow written directions and to do multiple tasks with a high degree of accuracy and attention to detail.

Pay is $11/hour.

Location: The library is located on bus lines, just off the Capitol Square at 120 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. in Madison.

To apply, please submit a cover letter and resume to elspeth.gordon@wicourts.gov which must include your hours available to work. (Emails preferred.)

February 25, 2019

GAO Reports and Decisions on HeinOnline

The Government Accountability Office, more commonly referred to as the GAO, is a nonpartisan agency that investigates how the federal government spends money, and provides information about ways the government might save money. The GAO generates several hundred reports and other documents each year, focusing on a variety of topics and agencies. These reports and surveys can be a valuable source of information, and may be rich with data.

You can now search almost 50,000 GAO reports and decisions on HeinOnline. This new collection, GAO Reports and Comptroller General Decisions, allows you to keyword search the collection using HeinOnline's advanced search features. You can also filter by location, individual  name, agency, and more. Start with a general search, or jump to one of the useful sub-collections like related Congressional Research Service reports, or legislative committee publications.



Learn more on the HeinOnline blog, or jump in and start researching now!

February 1, 2019

Job posting: Library Assistant


Are you a detail-oriented individual looking for part-time work? The Wisconsin State Law Library is seeking candidates for a Library Assistant - Limited Term Employment (LTE) position, 20 hours per week. Must have afternoon availability; Monday through Friday.
Duties include: processing, filing and shelving library materials, moving and shifting book collections, circulating materials, distributing mail, and providing other administrative support. Position involves lifting, stretching, bending, pushing loaded book carts, and sitting for extended periods.
Skills include: knowledge of general library procedures and on-line integrated library systems; knowledge of Microsoft Office applications including Word and Excel; ability to perform routine cash transactions; demonstrated ability to work with high degree of accuracy and attention to detail; friendly customer service and good oral communication skills. 
Pay: $15.123/hour.
Position is funded through June 30, 2019.
Location: The Wisconsin State Law Library is located on a bus line, just off the Capitol Square at 120 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. in Madison.

To apply: Please email your resume and cover letter to Amy.Crowder@wicourts.gov. You must include your hours available for work, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.

Deadline for applications: February 15, 2019.

The Wisconsin Court System is an equal opportunity employer and will provide reasonable accommodations to qualified applicants who request them.

January 27, 2019

Winter Weather Closures

The David T. Prosser Jr. Library, located in downtown Madison, is open to the public on Thursday, January 31.

The Milwaukee and Dane County Law Libraries, along with the courthouses, will be closed on Thursday, January 31 due to inclement weather. They will reopen on Friday, February 1. Contact the Wisconsin State Law Library at 608-267-9696 for help while they are closed.

Watch this post for updates and any further weather-related announcements this week. The Wisconsin Court System website lists statewide and county court closures: https://www.wicourts.gov/


The Milwaukee and Dane County Law Libraries, along with the courthouses, were also closed on Monday, January 28th due to weather. All three libraries were closed on Wednesday, January 30.

Updated 1/30, 6:45 pm

January 16, 2019

Libraries Closed on Martin Luther King Jr. Day

The State Law Library, and Milwaukee and Dane County Law Libraries will be closed on Monday, January 21st for the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday.

To send a question to the Wisconsin State Law Library while we are closed, you may call us at 608-267-9696 or Ask a Librarian online.

We will respond to questions and requests on Tuesday, January 22nd.

January 10, 2019

2017-2018 Wisconsin Statutes Now Available For Purchase

The Department of Administration's Document Sales recently posted purchasing information for the new 2017-2018 Wisconsin Statutes. The prices are:

  • Hardcover: $83.26
  • Softcover: $70.58

Statutes can be purchased from the Document Sales website. Call them directly at 608-243-2441.

January 7, 2019

WSLL @ Your Service January 2019

The January issue of WSLL @ Your Service is now online. Your comments are welcome! Please direct them to the editor, Carol Hassler.

In this issue: 

Bloomberg Law Now Available in the Library

Bloomberg Law incorporates Bloomberg's news, company, and financial data with legal research and business intelligence tools aimed at legal professionals. Next time you are in the library, check out Bloomberg Law! Read more

Where to Find Will Forms

We are frequently asked for information about wills. In addition to the statutory wills,  a number of sources in the library offer sample will forms and guidance to drafting wills. Read more

New Books

Our featured new titles this month are Legal Upheaval: a Guide to Creativity, Collaboration, and Innovation in Law and Water Rights and Environmental Regulation: a Lawyers Guide. Don't forget to check out this month's complete new book list. Read more

Tech Tip

Using your phone's camera to snap a photo of a paper document is quick and easy. However, if you need a good quality copy, want to email the image, or mark it up, turn to specialized scanning apps. Read more

Sign Up for After Hours Access

Would you like the convenience of using the State Law Library later in the evening or on weekends? You can by becoming an After Hours subscriber. Read more

Library News

Library closures, our open house recap, and 2019 CLE classes. Read more

January Snapshot

Julie Tessmer, Heidi Yelk, and Kari Zelinka attended the first annual Beacon & Eggs breakfast to benefit The Beacon. Read more

January 2, 2019

Recommended Modern Dictionaries

Recently we added Reading the law: the interpretation of legal texts, by Antonin Scalia and Bryan A. Garner, to our collection. This book includes a list of recommended modern dictionaries. Using this book as a reference, we've updated our collection and created a display in our library which showcases these dictionaries. Stop by our David T. Prosser Jr. Library location, or ask a librarian for help using one of these sources.


Law Dictionaries

2009: Black's law dictionary (9th edition)
2011: Merriam-Webster's dictionary of law (2nd edition)
2011: Garner's dictionary of legal usage (3rd edition)

English Language Dictionaries (most recent editions)

The Oxford English dictionary (online edition)
American heritage dictionary of the English language
Merriam-Webster's collegiate dictionary
The new Oxford American dictionary
The new shorter Oxford English dictionary
Webster's new world college dictionary
The Cambridge guide to English usage
Garner's modern American usage

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