Coding For Lawyers

Lawyers who learn how to code are the future of the legal field.

Welcome to Coding for Lawyers


Why Lawyers Should Code

Lawyers today need to know more than just the law. An understanding of technology is crucial and will only become more so as technology creeps ever more into the legal field. Learning to code can help a lawyer work with IT, have more confidence in dealing with tech clients, and build proof of concept software.

Class Overview

This class is based on the class taught by Matthew Stubenberg and Colin Starger at the University of Baltimore School of Law.

Syllabus

Classroom

You work in the California Attorneys Generals Office. Build a program to loop through ingredients in a product to discover products that have known carcinogens and should therefore be labelled as such.

Greenacre Statute

Homework

In class we built our algorithm to include Marijuana and powder cocaine. For homework, read the statute and determine the minimum for crack cocaine. Add this new drug and amounts into the algorithm.

MD Statute

MD Point Accumulation

Objectives

Introduce students to variables and if/else statements using integer comparison.

Classroom

Build a program for your solo firm's website that will tell the user the federal minimum sentencing based on drug and weight.

Federal Minimum Statute

Homework

In class we built our algorithm to include Marijuana and powder cocaine. For homework, read the statute and determine the minimum for crack cocaine. Add this new drug and amounts into the algorithm.

Objectives

Reinforce if/else statements. Introduce students to string methods like .lower() and .strip(). The prior traffic algorithm focused on integer comparison. This algorithm uses both integer comparison and string comparison.

Classroom

You work in the California Attorneys Generals Office. Build a program to loop through ingredients in a product to discover products that have known carcinogens and should therefore be labelled as such.

Carcinogens List

Homework

Build a more complex version of the program in class to identify when mixtures of chemicals create carcinogens.

Objectives

Lists While Loops For Loops In keyword

Sample Project Coming Soon

Classroom

Given a dictionary of case information. Create a case management system to access various pieces of information in that dictionary.

Homework

Adjust the program created in class to add new information into the case management system.

Objectives

Dictionaries Boolean While and Break

Sample Project Coming Soon

Problem

The Justice Department originally had a single PDF manual outlining the rules relating to the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR). However, they have since moved to an online resource with lots of sub pages making it difficult to search through.

Author

This project was developed by students in the Fall 2021 Coding For Lawyers course at Hawaii Law School with assistance by instructor Matthew Stubenberg.

Solution

The solution was to build a web scraper to scrape through all of the sub pages of the Justice Department's EOIR website. The HTML is scraped and combined into a single html document. A little bit of post processing work to make sure the images and links work. That html document is then converted into a single readable and searchable PDF.

Justice EOIR Immigration Manual

Click to download the a full PDF version of the justice.gov EOIR Manual. This was created December 2021. Items may have changed since then. The source website is located at https://www.justice.gov/eoir/eoir-policy-manual

Justice EOIR PDF

Problem

The Hawaii State Bar Association has a lot of useful information on its members. However, there is no way to download and analyze the data in bulk. The list could help identify bar members that law students could reach out to in order to learn about a particular law firm. Researchers could use this information to analyze information about what types of lawyers different law firms hire.

Author

This project was developed by students in the Fall 2021 Coding For Lawyers course at Hawaii Law School with assistance by instructor Matthew Stubenberg.

Solution

The solution is to build a web scraper to scrape through the HSBA member directory. The program starts by searching the letter "A" and cycling through each individual user, grabbing the relevant data points for each. Then the program searches the letter "B" and so on. All of the data points are stored in a CSV file. The final file contains 11,766 HSBA members both active and inactive.

Analysis of Public Defenders by Date of Admission to Hawaii Bar

The chart below shows the number of public defenders by date of admission to the Hawaii Bar.

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Problem

A person can be required to post a public notice before requesting the court grant them some property or right. Advocates can easily over look this if they are not paying close attention and it is difficult to look back at past public notices.

Author

This project was developed by students in the Fall 2021 Coding For Lawyers course at Hawaii Law School with assistance by instructor Matthew Stubenberg.

Solution

The solution is to scrape the Start Advertiser's webpage every day to automatically pull new public notices. These notices are stored in a SQL database and other applications can be connected to the database to send automated notifications to advocates.

Public Notice Scraper

All notices from Star Advertiser are scraped once a day and stored into a SQL database. Other applications can then easily connect to this database and check for new notices. Additionally, researchers and advocates can run analytics on the data for patterns.

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