Westlaw Next summer access

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Poupee22
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed Dec 21, 2011 7:36 pm

Westlaw Next summer access

Postby Poupee22 » Wed Jun 06, 2012 7:45 pm

I was at work today with some downtime and I started researching topics related to my work (but definitely not for work) on Westlaw Next without thinking. When I logged out, a message appeared that itemized the cases that I looked at and said that the charges would be seen on my invoice. I am a student and I requested summer access with the usual restrictions.

I called Westlaw Next and spoke to the customer service representative. She was really nice and assured me that everything that I do under my account would be charged to the school. She even said that the site will not let me look at anything that cost extra and warnings would pop up. I even wrote to customer service afterwards and complimented her service. So I log back into Westlaw Next to research more for my personal curiosity. Again, when I logged off, the message appeared again. And I don't think this message appears when I use Lexis Advanced.

Is anyone else having this issue? I am very nervous that thousands of dollars will be personally charged to me. I did a Google search and there are horror stories about students being charged personally or having to split the bill with the firm.

Anyone familiar with the crackdown procedures? Should I be worried? I don't even work in a firm - I work for a corporation that I researched today but my work does not involve legal research at all.

lawschoolftw
Posts: 338
Joined: Wed Oct 21, 2009 2:34 pm

Re: Westlaw Next summer access

Postby lawschoolftw » Wed Jun 06, 2012 9:58 pm

Poupee22 wrote:I was at work today with some downtime and I started researching topics related to my work (but definitely not for work) on Westlaw Next without thinking. When I logged out, a message appeared that itemized the cases that I looked at and said that the charges would be seen on my invoice. I am a student and I requested summer access with the usual restrictions.

I called Westlaw Next and spoke to the customer service representative. She was really nice and assured me that everything that I do under my account would be charged to the school. She even said that the site will not let me look at anything that cost extra and warnings would pop up. I even wrote to customer service afterwards and complimented her service. So I log back into Westlaw Next to research more for my personal curiosity. Again, when I logged off, the message appeared again. And I don't think this message appears when I use Lexis Advanced.

Is anyone else having this issue? I am very nervous that thousands of dollars will be personally charged to me. I did a Google search and there are horror stories about students being charged personally or having to split the bill with the firm.

Anyone familiar with the crackdown procedures? Should I be worried? I don't even work in a firm - I work for a corporation that I researched today but my work does not involve legal research at all.


Chill out, I'm sure it's fine the rep even told you it was fine. That said, be careful about searching at work. Part of the corporation's contract with Westlaw is that they won't let you use your student account. So, if you get busted surfing at work you could get the company in big trouble.

Poupee22
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed Dec 21, 2011 7:36 pm

Re: Westlaw Next summer access

Postby Poupee22 » Wed Jun 06, 2012 10:18 pm

Thank you so much! I honestly wasn't even thinking. In school, I don't even think twice about looking up a case or secondary sources or clicking on 100 cases for one simple assignment. Since I had no guilty conscience today when I was curious about past lawsuits of the company, I just opened a bunch of links! I feel really stupid but I hope Westlaw is kind and goes after the ones who really exploit its services.

dixiecupdrinking
Posts: 3142
Joined: Sun Oct 26, 2008 2:39 pm

Re: Westlaw Next summer access

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Wed Jun 06, 2012 10:43 pm

While your job might not involve legal research, when you went on Westlaw and conducted a bunch of searches about litigation relating to your employer, it probably looked a lot like you were doing legal research for your job. That is clearly out of bounds for student access. You'll probably be fine but I wouldn't do this again.

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MrPapagiorgio
Posts: 1747
Joined: Sat Feb 13, 2010 2:36 am

Re: Westlaw Next summer access

Postby MrPapagiorgio » Wed Jun 06, 2012 10:48 pm

Yea one time won't be a big deal. But if you consistently do this, obvious suspicion will be raised. There's more than a few threads on here about employers asking students (and even hiring students just for the Westlaw access) to use their student accounts for work-related research.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273586
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Westlaw Next summer access

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 06, 2012 11:43 pm

I was told by someone at a firm that logging in with your student account through the firm's server effectively charges the firm for the use. Truth?

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MrPapagiorgio
Posts: 1747
Joined: Sat Feb 13, 2010 2:36 am

Re: Westlaw Next summer access

Postby MrPapagiorgio » Thu Jun 07, 2012 12:19 am

Anonymous User wrote:I was told by someone at a firm that logging in with your student account through the firm's server effectively charges the firm for the use. Truth?

You're charged based on your account, not where you log in. By that logic if you log into Westlaw at home, you would be personally charged.

Poupee22
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed Dec 21, 2011 7:36 pm

Re: Westlaw Next summer access

Postby Poupee22 » Thu Jun 07, 2012 7:09 am

Just a quick follow up: my westlaw rep replied to me and said I could do any research over the summer as long as I am not being paid by my company for it. I want to avoid any suspicion and would not be this stupid again. Just in case, I will avoid logging into Westlaw at all at work even if it's for law review/personal (my company is ok with down time if work gets done). Thanks everyone!




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