Understanding terms & connectors searches

Terms & connectors searches contain multiple words, phrases, or citations connected to each other by special operational terms such as and, or, /n, and so on. The operational terms are called connectors, and they enable you to identify specific relationships that must exist between the search terms you have entered in order to produce the precise search results you want.

For example, you can use terms & connectors searches to find all documents where a given word or phrase is within a certain number of words from another given word or phrase. Or, you can use them to find all documents that contain specific words or phrases that do not also include other specific words or phrases, and so on. For instance, the following search enables you to find documents containing the term "capital" but not the term "gains":

capital and not gains

You can also use multiple connectors to specify more complex relationships. For example, the following search finds documents where the word "dog" appears within 3 words of "bite" and the word "liability" appears within 20 words of either "dog" or "bite":

dog /3 bite /20 liability

When you use multiple connectors, however, keep in mind that Lexis Advance Pacific processes the connectors in a specific priority order that determines the results you receive. For example, the search expression "court or tribunal and impartial" could retrieve vastly different results, depending on whether it is interpreted as "(court or tribunal) and (impartial)" or as "(court) or (tribunal and impartial)". Therefore, in order for you to use multiple connectors effectively, you must understand the process by which Lexis Advance Pacific evaluates them. For more information on this, see How multiple search connectors are evaluated.

Important: Lexis Advance Pacific 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 ensure a phrase you are researching is interpreted as a phrase, however, enclose it in quotation marks.
Note: In addition to entering terms & connectors into the Lexis Advance Pacific search box, you can also use the Advanced Search tab, which provides you with guidance and a semi-automated way to enter terms & connectors. To access this tab, select the Search: [filters] button at the right edge of the search box and select Advanced Search in the left margin of the list that appears. For more information, see Using the Advanced Search tab.
Tip: For personal reference, you can create a printable, PDF version of the Terms & Connectors Quick Reference, which includes a brief description of the different connectors and wildcard characters you can use. You can also create a printable, PDF version of the Terms & Connectors Complete Reference, which includes all the help articles associated with these types of searches.

Searching for Common Legal Phrases

Using Quotation Marks to Find Exact Matches

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