You need it, We've got it
Jun 05, 2017
One of the things I like to do, as a law Librarian, is to peruse the book stacks here at the Riverside County Law Library. Many times I'll see things I've never seen before and, when I have the chance, I'll read through some of our many offerings (you know, to keep up on the latest goings on).
This morning, as I was working on a research project for a library patron, I happened to glance over at O'Brien's Evaluator. O'Brien's is a kind of like a crystal ball in that it is a good predictor of whether your case has any value (i.e. money) based on your set of facts and the RCLL has O'Brien's in print as far back as 2000. That's a whole lot of information for one library!
So, how can O'Brien's help you? Say you have a four-year-old who, through no fault of their own, happens to have the little finger on their left hand suddenly lopped off. What might be the value of your case? Now compare that to a world-renowned brain surgeon making a seven figure salary who, through no fault of their own, happens to have the little finger on their left hand suddenly lopped off. What might be the value of that case? I'm guessing the latter case might be worth a whole lot more than the former - and that's what O'Brien's does - helps you determine the value of a case.
Broken down into 11 areas/indexes, O'Brien's helps users find what they're looking for the/a
- Plaintiff attorneys
- Defendant attorneys
- Medical Experts (by specialty and/or name)
- Technical Experts (by specialty and/or name)
- Courts and Judges
- Facts (of the case)
- Injuries (inflicted)
- Verdicts (monetary amounts)
- Case Number(s)
Unless you know the attorney or doctor or expert's name, the Factual index is probably going to be the most helpful as it identifies the specific nature of the case dealt with. For instance, say you were looking in the 2015 O'Brien's for a case dealing with a premises liability case where a person was injured by a security guard. According to the the Factual Index, you would look on page 119. Maybe you are dealing with a wrongful death action against the police. According to the Factual Index, you would look on page 448.
Of course, each case turns on the facts of each case so the cases in O'Brien's can only serve as a guide to what might happen in your case. That said, O'Brien's is still a great resources to help you see what might happen in your case and whether it might be worth your while to even file a lawsuit.
Bret is a Legal Research & Instructional Services Librarian at our Main Library.