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VLW Web site features new content

On Aug. 6, Virginia Lawyers Weekly debuted its redesigned and revamped Web site at www.valawyersweekly.com.

But version 2.0 is more than just a new look. While our previous content and overall functionality have remained intact, you’ll notice that we have moved a few things around, and we also have added a variety of new features.

Here is a quick guide to help you navigate the updated site:

News Stories

On the new Web site, you will still find all of the latest Virginia Lawyers Weekly news stories in the upper left column of the homepage.

Directly below VLW’s weekly news content, we’ve added a new feature called “News from Across Virginia.” Check here daily for legal headlines from other news sources around the commonwealth.

Our news stories will be available for one week to the general public. After this time, they will become part of our Archives, accessible only to subscribers with a username and password. To sign up for online access, click the “Register” link at the top of the home page and fill out the form.

Registered subscribers have instant access to all the material published in the paper since 1993. To search for past news stories, opinion digests, Verdicts & Settlements and special features, click the Archives button in the top menu. You can also type your search term into the Google box at the top of the site.

Opinion Digests

Each week, Virginia Lawyers Weekly publishes digests of the previous week’s cases from select state and federal courts. You can view a list of our most recent digests by going to the Archives tab on the pull-down menu and selecting “Opinion Digests.”

For those curious which opinion digests have proven valuable to others in the legal community, look to the right hand column for a list of our “Most Popular Decisions.” This ranking system lists the top three most-read digests on our site.

Virginia Lawyers Weekly also continues to feature a daily “Top Opinion.” The Top Op is a brief summary of a recent case of note, which includes a link to the corresponding full-text PDF. You can now find this case summary in the upper right hand corner of the homepage. The opinion is available to everyone, including non-subscribers, for a day.

Subscribers can continue to access the full text of all opinions we digest for free online. See sidebar for instructions.

Blogs

Virginia Lawyers Weekly now runs three blogs at our Web site. In the top middle column of the homepage, we’ve included a quick access point featuring the three latest entries for each of our blogs.

The award-winning VLW Blog, established in 2007 and going strong ever since, reports breaking news as it happens, analyzes recent court cases, aggregates local news stories and the occasional humorous “hearsay” item.

The General Assembly Blog has been renamed the Virginia Legal H Political Blog. In addition to General Assembly coverage, the LHP Blog will focus on local news surrounding law and politics. We will also bring you highlights from the upcoming gubernatorial election

Our newest blog, which launched along with the new site, is the Publisher’s Notebook. Here, you will find reflections and commentary from VLW’s publisher and editor-in-chief, Paul Fletcher.

The Daily Alert and Social Media

Every weekday, VLW sends out our Daily Alert e-mail, which features links to the latest legal news stories from various media outlets across Virginia, our latest blog posts, the day’s Top Opinion and links to our Web-only articles.

To sign up, simply enter your e-mail in the field provided in the right hand column of the homepage. Shortly thereafter, you will receive a confirmation e-mail – click on the link provided and you will begin receiving the Alert on the following day.

Under the Daily Alert sign-up box, we’ve added a series of icons that link to our profiles on several popular social media sites. Click through to keep up to date with Virginia Lawyers Weekly on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Flickr.

What’s new at the VLW Web site

Subscribers who visit the Virginia Lawyers Weekly Web site to access the latest legal news and court opinions now have even more features to enjoy. To check out our new, Web-only content, go to www.valawyersweekly.com and scroll down the home page to find these and other features “Below the Fold.”

The VLW Quick 10. The VLW Quick 10, which debuted in the paper and in the VLW Blog earlier this summer, is a feature that mixes humor, trivia and practical tips into a weekly Top 10 list. Previous lists have included: made-up law firms taken from names of new bar passers, popular songs about lawyers and reasons for striking jurors that have held up in court.

Legal Destinations. In continuation of a feature article we ran in the July 13 edition, we will put on our travel hats each week and highlight law-related tourist attractions from across the state. Look for visitor information, with an added dose of local history, on notable lawyer homes, colorful courthouses and other famous legal sites around Virginia.

Ethics Chalkboard. This new feature is a weekly Q and A discussion of hypothetical legal ethics questions. Our analysis includes examples from the Virginia State Bar’s Legal Ethics Opinions and from real cases here in the commonwealth. This week’s question: Can a solo practitioner named Jim Stevens call his law firm “Jim Stevens & Associates”?

Featured Video. The Web is full of law-related videos, and we will continue to update our homepage with new material, ranging from the serious to the downright silly. Currently, we have footage of a lively dance routine that breaks out during a divorce proceeding (OK, it’s only a parody of a wedding video that was a recent sensation on YouTube). But where else will you get to see a judge doing a donkey kick across the floor?

Online-only Articles. Throughout the week, we will continue to post valuable material you won’t find in the pages of the paper. Keep checking back for new articles, including practice tips, personality profiles, technology highlights and more.

Accessing full-text opinions online

Virginia Lawyers Weekly continues to provide full-text opinions for every case we digest in the paper.
On our new Web site, you can access these opinions through our top pull-down menu. Hold your mouse over the “Opinions” tab and select the name of the issuing court.

The courts we cover include:

• Federal Courts: 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, U.S. District Court – Eastern and Western Districts of Virginia, U.S. Bankruptcy Court – Eastern and Western Districts of Virginia

• State Courts: Supreme Court of Virginia, Virginia Court of Appeals, Virginia Circuit Courts

Each court page contains a list of full-text opinions, sorted by VLW number. You can also click on “full-text opinions” link in the pull-down menu to see a list of all of our recent full-text opinions.

Full-text opinions from most courts are free to all visitors of our site. However, Circuit Court and U.S. Eastern District Court opinions are available to subscribers only.

If you are a subscriber and haven’t yet signed up for online access, click on the “Register” link at the top of our site and fill out the form. Once you’ve signed up, you will have instant access to all of Virginia Lawyers Weekly’s online content, including full-text opinions and all articles going back to 1993.

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