How do I use the Similar Provisions feature in LawNow?

When users are looking at the full text of Acts in LawNow, they may see a new feature called ‘Similar Provisions’. This feature shows the user recommendations for equivalent and similar provisions in other Australian jurisdictions. The recommendations are based on the presence of comparable wording within Acts from the same (or related) practice areas. Not all sections will have recommendations for similar provisions: the similarity must exceed a relevance threshold for a recommendation to appear. The relevance threshold has been selected to provide users with a range of recommendations, not just directly equivalent sections.

Where can I find the Similar Provisions feature?

These recommendations can be accessed via the new ‘Similar Provisions’ pod, located on the right side of the screen, next to the full text of legislation in LawNow documents. The pod will not appear in every LawNow document, and recommendations will not be made for every section:

  • Only LawNow documents containing the text of legislation will have Similar Provisions pods. Other LawNow documents, such as the List of Defined Terms, Historical Notes or LawNow Legislative History, will not include a Similar Provisions pod.
  • Not all practice areas are included. We have launched the feature for a limited number of practice areas: Building & Construction, Defamation, Evidence, Limitation of Actions, Tort, and Transport. We will be progressively rolling out the feature for the remaining practice areas in 2019.
  • Recommendations do not exist for all sections. If an Act is in scope but we could not find any similar provisions for a section in the document, the pod will not appear in the right-hand pane for that document. Also, recommendations may exist for some sections in a document but not all sections in the document. If there are no recommendations for a section, it will not appear in the Similar Provisions pod.

How do I use the Similar Provisions pod?

Select any section title listed in the Similar Provisions pod on the right of the screen to navigate to the start of that section in the body of the document.

In the Similar Provisions pod, under the title of the section you are researching, click on the ‘Top similar provisions’ link. The content of the pod will expand to show a small number (one to three) of the most similar provisions, from any Australian jurisdiction. Users can then:

  • Click one of the provisions to go to the full text of that provision elsewhere in LawNow; or
  • Click on the View all link to go to a new screen showing a consolidated list of all similar provisions for that section, across all jurisdictions.

How do I use the new consolidated view for Similar Provisions

If the user selects View all in the Similar Provisions pod for any section in the full text LawNow document, the user will be taken to a new screen. The new screen will show a list of all similar provisions (over the relevance threshold) for that section ranked by degree of similarity. The first list, under the heading All, will show recommendations from any Australian jurisdiction other than the jurisdiction of the original section. Selecting the provision title will take the user to the full text of the recommended provision within LawNow in a new tab.

The user can also see results for a single Australian jurisdiction by selecting one of the other tabs next to All. If there are no recommendations from a particular jurisdiction, that jurisdiction will not appear as a separate tab. This may be because no similar provisions exist for that jurisdiction. For example, the difference between the legislative power of the Commonwealth and the legislative power of the States and Territories can lead to a lack of recommendations for, or from, federal legislation.

How do I use the section menu in the consolidated Similar Provisions view expanded?

If the user would like to see recommendations for similar provisions for other sections in the same LawNow document, the menu on the left of the consolidated Similar Provisions view will allow the user to see those recommendations without returning to the original LawNow document. The user can select any provision title in the menu to see associated recommendations. If a section title does not appear in the menu, it means there are no recommendations for that section.

How do I return to the full text of the legislation in LawNow?

When the user wants to return to the full text of the legislation they were originally viewing, the user can select the ‘Back to document’ button in the top left-hand corner of the screen.

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