Imagine telling the world that a United States Supreme Court opinion is still good law, even though it had been explicitly overturned three weeks ago? Well, West apparently was doing just that with regard to the case Michigan v. Jackson, 475 U.S. 625, which was overruled by Montejo v. Louisiana.
The misreporting continued until late Friday, but appears to have since been corrected. Lexis/Nexis reported the correct posture from the start.
Interesting blunder, but not an impossible one. After all, this work of updating cases is done by humans. In some ways, it is no different than the partner who relies on the associate’s “shepardizing”, only to find the associate has missed some key treatment in a case.
So, what do you do in court when you mistakenly rely on authority that is no longer good law? Explain that you relied on West – one of the largest legal publishers in the world, which by all rights should be a legally reasonable thing to do.
Hat tip to Legal Writing Prof Blog