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Overview of CARA from Casetext

by Julie Tedjeske on 2017-12-05T15:48:00-05:00

CARA is a product from Casetext that finds cases that are potentially relevant to the subject of an uploaded legal document but that are not cited in the document. Casetext is a larger database that is free, while CARA is a subscription (i.e., fee based) add-on feature that is offered free to law students. CARA was named the 2017 American Association of Law Libraries' Product of the Year.

CARA is different from other research resources because it generates results by analyzing a document rather than in response to a search request. Potential uses for CARA would include checking your own brief to make sure that you did not miss a relevant case or checking an opponent’s brief to see what potentially relevant cases are not cited.

Results in CARA can be modified using search terms. This is useful if you are only interested in one issue in a multi-issue brief. Results can also be filtered by jurisdiction.

To use CARA, simply upload a memo, brief, or other document containing legal citations into CARA and drag it into the analysis space. Uploaded documents can either be in searchable PDF or Word format. CARA will analyze the uploaded document and then provide the following categories of documents as results:

  • Cases: These are the cases that the software recommends as best matching the facts and law in the uploaded brief. These are cases that are NOT cited in the uploaded document but which appear to be potentially relevant.
  • Statutes: The software may recommend potentially relevant statutes or regulations.
  • Briefs: These are publicly filed briefs that match the facts and law of the uploaded document. CARA only recommends briefs that were filed by select law firms, government entities, and advocacy organizations.
  • Analysis: These are potentially relevant blog posts, law firm newsletter contributions, or similar content from firms that provide such information to the Casetext service.
  • Finally, a list of cases, statutes, and other items in the cited document is created and provided in .pdf format.

Here is a short YouTube video on CARA. To sign up for CARA/Casetext: (1) click the "Log In" link in the upper right corner of casetext.com; (2) click on "Sign up!" at the top of the log in box; (3) enter the required information (name, email, password) and click save (you need to use your duq.edu address); (4) select "Law Student" as role; and (5) select "Duquesne University School of Law" as the organization.

NOTE: If you are interested in CARA/Casetext, please note that Casetext is looking for students for its Student Ambassador's program. The deadline to apply is December 15th.


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