Reasons to use print legal resources, even if the book is also available online (either fee-based or free):
- One of the best reasons is that legal resources are just easier to use in print, especially if they have a good index.
- Examples: treatises, AmJur2d, CJS, ALRs, restatements, digests
- Browsability (chapter, section, indices, etc.) - You can see at a glance what is in a particular treatise, chapter or article. This also enables you to research a concept in context, rather than receiving a result with no surrounding history or explanation.
- Historical materials and information are usually not available in digital format.
- Examples: State and federal statutes, newspapers, law reviews and journals
- Incomplete coverage - You cannot count on the results you receive from an online or electronic search as being complete, especially if the subscription to online databases does not cover some materials (common with LexisNexis, Bloomberg and Westlaw subscriptions).
- Examples: Administrative rules and regulations (federal, state, local), treatises
- Legislative histories are MUCH easier to research and compile using print sources.
- Examples: USCCAN, Serial Set, U.S. Statutes at Large, state and federal statutes