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Internet Resources for the Legal Professional


This site was created as a guide to investigation of people
places and things on the free Internet. 
The concepts remain the same, however the web sites do not.
That being the case, no new info or links will be added but links will be
updated or removed/disabled as warranted.

Site created 3/2004.  Links updated 5/2008



The links on this page focus primarily on the free resources available on the web.  However, many of the free resources have "premium" components or "enhanced" services for a fee.  There are also people locator, public records and asset searches on a  pay-per-search or subscription basis.  You will need to evaluate the quality of information from these varied sources as compared to obtaining it from other resources to find the most suitable choice for your research needs. 

A few of the subscription or pay services are:

When using the "free Internet"; that is, web sites that host or sponsor information at no charge, it is very important that you consider the source.  Expert Researcher Genie Tyburski of Virtual Chase has some excellent suggestions you can employ in evaluating the quality of any web site:

Develop an Approach:

Before commencing your factual research on the web, take some time to consider such points as:

  • What do you already know?
  • What is it you need to know?
  • How much time or money is budgeted?
  • How much should you research on the web before hiring a professional investigator or use a pay service.
There must be a balance or you could spend countless hours going from one site to another.  One important facet of making your web research more efficient and, therefore more valuable, is to collect resource links (web addresses) that will allow you to quickly access the resource.  This means making use of your bookmarks or favorites.

You could bookmark a web page like this one which points to many other sites that offer many different types of data, or you might want to bookmark the specific hosts of the types of information you need. 

Researching People:

Sometimes the best place to begin is with the people directory or "white pages" for lookups by name or a reverse directory for lookup by telephone number.  Here are a few starters:

Then use two or more general search engines using the person's name as the query.  On most search engines this means placing the persons name in quotation marks ( i.e., "John Doe").  Use variations of the persons name (i.e., "Doe, John" or "J. Doe" or with/without middle initial). 

If the name is common you might need to add the name of the city as an additional key word in the query.  If the name is fairly unique you should consider a search using just the last name.

If you know the person's employer, use a general search engine to locat the employer's web site or information about the employer.  Sometimes this will provide direct or indirect references to the person you are researching.

In the various links below you will find other resources at which you could gather information about the person you are researching.

Researching Businesses:

You might start by locating and reviewing the company's web site.  Try going directly to their website by typing the company's name in your browser's address bar along the appropriate URL components. 

www.[name/abbreviation of company].com for Cisco Systems for Hewlett-Packard

After locating the company website, go back to the search engine and use the advanced features to find reference to the company (or its principals), excluding web pages originating from the company. It's a good opportunity to see what other's have to say.
In addition to using the same tools that you would use to research information about people, here are some sites that provide corporate or business capsules.
Recorded Instruments & Vital Statistics, Etc. 
         - Birth, Marriage, Death, Recordings, Fictitious Business Names
City of Fresno Finance Department
  • Fresno Business Lookups 
Social Security Death Index
National Non-Profit Organizations
Public Records Resource Sites (sites with collections of links)
Real Property Records
Court Dockets / Indices
  • Fresno Superior Court - Click on navigation button for "Case Information"
  • Pacer Web Site - This is where you can sign up for access to most federal district courts.  Links are provided to the court sites.
Finding Experts for Your Case
Investigating Their Experts - All of these sites involve charges.

Medical Information - Injuries, Illnesses, Pharmaceutical Reference
Newspapers: Monitoring & Alert Services - These sites track news items, interest rates, stock prices, web sites changes and more. 
Making the most of your web research means more than just knowing a web site address (or URL).  Get to know some of the configuration settings of your browser - Internet Explorer or Netscape Navigator, learn about the nuances of various search engines and learn a little about privacy issues related to just browsing the Internet.  Here are some links to get you started:
With the growing presence of attorneys on the web, here a couple of attorney web sites for your enjoyment.
  • Powers Phillips Attorneys
  • Space Lawyers 
And for those with just too much time on their hands!
 Back to top



Federal Resources
California Resources
Fresno Resources
Reference Tools
Resource Links for Factual Research
Products Spotlight

All States:
Secretary of State - Searches
Professional Licensing - Searches
California Counties:
Tentative Rulings / Dockets
Fictitious Business Name / Official Records
GIS Mapping Sites

All information presented on this site is provided as a courtesy to assist users in navigating the Internet and the World Wide Web.  The resource supplied should not be construed as or substituted for the giving of legal advice.  This site makes no claim, warranty or guarantee as to accuracy or reliability of the content of sites to which links are provided.


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Last update:   5/07/2008, 6/05/2008

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