Answered By: Shaun Jamison
Last Updated: Feb 11, 2015     Views: 88

Scope (sometimes referred to as coverage)  is a term of art that refers to the recentness of information, completeness of coverage (including date ranges) and the depth of a database as well as the types of documents available.  Thus, some freely accessible databases will contain up-to-the-minute information, but may be lacking in historical coverage. They may just include cases up to a particular date, or the codes may not have been updated with material just passed by the state legislature. Information on scope for free websites might be contained near a search query tool, in an About section or Help section. You will likely have to explore some to find it. In Westlaw, databases have a little “i” which you may click on to get the scope information.