The govinfo website provides access to millions of documents produced by all three branches of the U.S. Government. This February, GPO celebrates the milestone of providing access to over 3.2 million opinions from 140 United States appellate, district, and bankruptcy courts. Since FY21 began in October, five new courts have started to make their opinions available in govinfo. The most recent court is the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida, which has published over 48.6 thousand opinions in govinfo.The U.S. Courts collection in govinfo is an ongoing, collaborative effort between the U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO) and the Administrative Office of the United States Courts (AOUSC) that began in 2011 as a pilot project with a select number of Federal courts. Based on the resounding success of the pilot, the collaboration has expanded over the years. Opinions are generally available as far back as 2004, some even older, and are searchable at the individual opinion level. The opinions can be found using basic and advanced search techniques over various search fields such as opinion filed date, court type, court name, case number, nature of suit, party name, party role, state, and more.
Finding Information in the U.S. Courts Opinions Collection in govinfo
Search options are available by clicking the orange SEARCH button at the top right corner of any page.
- Search only in the U.S. Courts collection by adding collection:uscourts to your Basic Search query. Alternatively, you can perform a search and then locate United States Courts Opinions in the filters on the left side Refine Your Search navigation area of the search results page.
- Combine fields for targeted searches. For example, use Basic Search to find opinions related to the Nature of Suit for "Antitrust" in 2018.
Advanced Search – Click here to select a date or date range, collection, and up to 5 additional fields.
- First, select United States Courts Opinions under Refine by Collection. Then, fields customized to the U.S. Courts collection will populate automatically in the boxes under the Search In heading.
- Combine fields for targeted searches. For example, use Advanced Search to find opinions related to the Nature of Suit for “Antitrust” in 2018 for the state of California.
Browse – Click here to browse U.S. Courts opinions by court type, court name, year, and case number.
If you would like to track when opinions are made available in govinfo by a specific court, you can subscribe to the govinfo RSS feed for an individual court. In addition, a list of courts and their respective court codes is available in govinfo Help information which includes search examples, metadata samples for constructing complex query strings, and other useful tips for locating opinions.
Looking for all opinions associated with a case of particular interest? Try a search for an opinion, for example, related to a topic such as toxic substances. Then, select the Details button for more information about a specific opinion. Finally, navigate to the Document in Context tab on that page to view all opinions for that case. The opinions are listed in chronological order, and the PDF or Details information can be accessed for each opinion.
Learn more about U.S. Court opinions and the Federal court system at uscourts.gov. >