Jan. 4, 2012 – It’s the one legal resource all Wisconsin circuit court judges have in their libraries, and the one that should be in every attorney’s office: the Wisconsin Judicial Benchbook series.
Originally produced by the Wisconsin Office of Judicial Education to fulfill a long-recognized need for a practical courtroom reference for Wisconsin’s judges, the benchbooks became available to the legal community at large in 1983. In that year, the Office of Judicial Education began an ongoing collaboration with the State Bar of Wisconsin to maintain and update the series. The benchbooks have since gained best-seller status among State Bar of Wisconsin PINNACLE™ publications.
For Wisconsin’s judiciary, especially new judges and those periodically rotated to new assignment areas, the benchbooks are an invaluable and routinely used resource. Organized in a condensed outline format, the benchbooks provide quick and efficient access to information for judges on the bench, and for attorneys in the courtroom.
A product of collective judicial knowledge
These benchbooks are a distillation of the combined experience, practice, and thoughts of many outstanding Wisconsin judges and attorneys on courtroom practice and procedure. Members of five judicial committees draft annual updates for each of the five benchbooks in the series:
Newly revised editions in 2011
During 2011, the benchbook committees issued revised editions for two volumes – the Family Benchbook and the Civil Benchbook – and supplemented the other three volumes in the series. All the 2011 revisions and supplements have integrated recent statutory amendments and case law developments occurring since the 2010 supplements for each volume. The Family Benchbook revision, for example, incorporates Wisconsin appellate court decisions addressing various family law issues, such as maintenance, the UCCJEA, and attorney fees. The Civil Benchbook revision includes new information relating to admissibility of expert testimony (the Daubert standard); electronic discovery; limitations on damages; and jurisdictional amounts for small claims actions.
All five titles in the Wisconsin Judicial Benchbook series are available in print at a cost of $100 per volume or $400 for the entire set, plus tax and shipping. Subscribers to the State Bar’s automatic supplementation service will receive future updates at 10 percent off the update price. Annual subscriptions to Books UnBound™ start at $129 per title, $349 for the entire set of benchbooks online, and $649 for the full Books UnBound online library (single-user prices; call for firm pricing). Subscribers to the full Books UnBound library will receive updates automatically. Order online, or for more information, call the State Bar at (800) 728-7788 or (608) 257-3838.