A court researcher is an employee for a legal company that finds the information needed for cases and legal matters by digging through the court records. For example, if an attorney has a case that involves a mortgage deed, the attorney may hire a court researcher to go to the courthouse where the records are housed, look through the file and find the information that the attorney needs to win his or her client’s case in court.
On the flip side, some court researchers work for the court. This could mean the researcher works for a particular judge. When the judge needs to research court cases, law or find specific documents for a case, they will turn to the court researcher in order to find the information the judge seeks.
A freelance researcher may even work for individuals or a variety of clients. He may dig into the court records on a case by case basis depending on what the client has hired him to conduct research on and to find.
A court researcher may have to physically go to the courthouse where the records are kept. This is because some courthouses do not have public records online or the records the researcher is looking for is not a matter of public record. Other times, courthouses have spent a lot of time and money turning their paper records into electronic records. This means researchers may be able to access the information they need online.
The work of a court researcher can be very varied. In one situation, the researcher may be digging up the criminal background of a potential employee for a company that is consider hiring the person. The next case the researcher works on may be to find all of the previous cases that pertain to the same situation that an attorney or judge is currently working on, so they can use the research to show how the outcome of each of those cases should affect the outcome of this case.
Being a researcher is a job that requires good research skills and patience. It also requires a tolerance for working alone because the researcher is often sitting in the file room of the courthouse pulling, reading through and copying information from file. While there is some interaction between the researcher and the client that has employed them, a court research position is typically a position of solitude.