Searching in Legal Research®

Lexis+® Australia Legal Research® offers a wide range of search capabilities. You can enter words, phrases, and citations into the red search box at any time to find documents in LexisNexis® sources and on the Web. You can also use the Search Everything button at the right edge of the search box to limit your searches to specific areas of concern.

Note: Lexis+® Australia automatically recognizes citations and returns all case documents associated with entered citations. You can, however, precede an entered citation with the term cit: to specifically query only CaseBase® records. If the CaseBase® record is found, Legal Research® opens it automatically. If the CaseBase® record is not found, it opens the associated case record.


How to complete a basic search:

  1. In the Red Search box, enter the terms or phrases on which you want to search. As you type, the Word Wheel might display an auto-complete list of options related to your search. Types of suggestions could include sources, company names or smart index terms.

    Note: If you do not choose a result from the list displayed by the Word Wheel, the search results includes all articles that mention the search terms, even if they only appear once.

  2. Enter your search term or select a term from the Word Wheel.
  3. Click the Search Everything drop-down menu and choose a category in which you want to search
  4. Pre-filter your search to a specific source, topic, content type or practice area, see Using Pre-Search Filters.
  5. Consider using connectors to define relationships between search terms.
  6. Click the Search button to complete your search.



Creating natural language or terms & connectors searches

Legal Research® supports both natural language and terms & connectors searches and automatically determines which type of search to run, based on the search terms you enter. A natural language search enables you to enter search terms as a question using the words, phrases, citations, and syntax you would use if asking another person about the information you are seeking. By contrast, a terms & connectors search consists of multiple words, phrases, or citations connected to each other by special operational terms called connectors. The connectors identify the relationships that must exist between those terms in order to produce relevant research results. You can enter search terms & connectors directly into the search box, or you can select the Search Everything button at the right edge of the search box, select Advanced Search, and use the form that appears to enter the terms and connectors.

Finding specific phrases

Legal Research® automatically interprets many common legal phrases, such as "limited liability partnership" and "summary judgment", as phrases, instead of as individual search terms. If you want to be sure a phrase you are searching for is interpreted as a phrase, however, you can enclose it in quotation marks.


Finding variations of words and names

To make your search terms shorter and simpler, you can use wildcard characters in the search box to find variations of words and names.


Using the suggested terms feature

As you enter search terms, Legal Research® automatically displays possible search entries containing the characters you are typing. If you see the search entry you want, you can save time by selecting it from the displayed list. It can also help you avoid typos.


Limiting searches to specific jurisdictions, content types, legal topics, and sources

You can select the Search Everything button at the right edge of the search box to display options that enable you to limit searches to specific jurisdictions and content types. For more information, see Search for Specific Content Types

You can also select the Search Everything button to limit searches to legal topics at the highest level of the Legal Research® legal topic hierarchy. Or, you can select the Browse button at the top of the page to limit searches to topics at lower levels of the topic hierarchy. For more information, see Limit Search to Specific Legal Topics

Finally, you can select the Browse button at the top of the page to limit searches to specific sources. For more information, see see Limit Search to Specific Sources


Using the Recent & Favourites list

Each time you select one or more search filters and generate a set of results, Legal Research® stores the filters in the Recent & Favourites list. This enables you to retrieve the filters for use in later searches.


Using the Advanced Search Tab

The Advanced Search tab helps you create searches using terms & connectors. You can also use this tab to access the CaseBase® record you want.