The LexisNexis® Services Linking Feature
Welcome to the LexisNexis® Services Linking page! This page is designed to help you create and tailor intranet pages for your firm.
The LexisNexis Services Linking page provides information about the following items. Click one of the links below for detailed information.
Quick Searching with URLs
Users who have a LexisNexis services ID and password can find information on a topic by signing in to the LexisNexis services, completing a form, and reviewing the results.
Now you can create an URL (Uniform Resource Locator) to do the same thing in one step (the user will also need to enter a LexisNexis services ID and password when prompted).
For example, you could create a URL to keep up with the stock exchange, find the text of cases pertaining to monopolies, or Shepardize™ a case.
Group several URLs on an Intranet page, and you can help your colleagues find information fast, just by going to the page on the topic they need and using one or more of the URLs you created.
How do you build a URL to find information using the LexisNexis services? Follow the guidelines below, then use your search strategy ability to create unlimited links!
For more information about searching with the LexisNexis services, including how to build a search, see Additional Search Tips.
The general format for research URLs is:
followed by a series of parameters separated by ampersands (&). See "Character Entities" for more information about using ampersands and other special characters.
Note: You can also use www.lexis.com/research/xlink. Either URL will work.
The parameters should be in lower-case (the parameter values, such as the client name, may be in either upper- or lower-case). Most of the parameters can be in any order. Just be sure www.lexis.com/xlink? is first. For placement of the other parameters, see "Other Parameters".
A sample format is shown below.
To see samples of links you can use to search the LexisNexis services, click Example LexisNexis Services Links.
Character Entities (&, +, #, etc.)
Certain characters such as an ampersand (&), plus sign (+), or pound sign (#) are reserved characters in HTML, and must be replaced by a character entity in the URL.
For example, to include D&B in your search, you must use D%26B instead.
For the character entities for all other characters, see an HTML reference guide.
- Sub is the subject ID for the subject area you want to search in. For example, the subject ID for Admiralty Law > Charterparties is:
To see a list of all the subject IDs, click Topics and Subject IDs.
- When using the Sub parameter, you must also use the Source and Search parameters (see below).
- If you specify sub=top, the "All Topics" form is displayed so the user can begin searching the subject categories.
- The only Searchtype values that can be used with the Sub parameter are Boolean and Natural Language (formerly called FREESTYLE™). If you do not specify Searchtype, this value defaults to Boolean or the last Searchtype that was used (using either the LexisNexis Services Linking feature or the LexisNexis services).
- You cannot use the Sub parameter with the Category, Go, or Redirect parameters.
- Source is the abbreviated name for the library and file you want to search in. For example, the source parameter for the News library and the Most Recent 90 Days file is:
For a complete list of LexisNexis sources, use the Source Directory in the LexisNexis services or check with your law librarian.
- Searchtype is the name of the kind of search you want to perform, such as Boolean (terms and connectors), Natural Language (FREESTYLE™), Search by Topic or Headnote, "More Like Selected Text", LEXSEE®, Shepard's®, Auto-Cite™, etc. Valid entries for searchtype are:
seltext (for a "More Like Selected Text" search)
For example, the searchtype parameter for a Boolean search can be:
- If you designate the FREESTYLE feature as the searchtype, you may also include mandatory terms as shown below:
The mandatory terms in the example are: incidence, lung, cancer, female and smoker.) Using mandatory terms is optional.
- To locate a specific topic in the topic hierarchy, use searchtype=topic.
For example, to find the total disability topic in the insurance law area of the topic hierarchy, use:
- To run a "More Like Selected Text" search, use "searchtype=seltext" and insert the selected text after the "search" parameter.
For example, use:
- The text in a "More Like Selected Text" may not exceed 1,000 characters.
- If you have the "Allow me to edit my search" option checked under "More Like Selected Text" on the Preferences page, the "More Like Selected Text" form will be displayed when you use the "seltext" searchtype, so you can edit your search terms or select a different source to search.
- If you do not have the "Allow me to edit my search" option checked under "More Like Selected Text" on the Preferences page, the "More Like Selected Text" form will be not be displayed, and you will not be able to edit your search terms. The "More Like Selected Text" search will be run using the last item (source name or combined sources) in your "Recently Used Sources" drop-down list.
- See the "autosubmit" parameter below for more information about running "More Like Selected Text" searches.
- Search is any valid LexisNexis search syntax with words separated by a plus sign (+). An example of a search parameter is:
Note: URLs cannot contain spaces. You must replace spaces with a plus sign (+). See "Character Entities" for more information.
- Relativedate restricts your search to a specific period of time. Valid entries for relativedate are:
(n represents a number from 1 to 999)
Note: The time period is calculated using Eastern Time. Relativedate is an optional parameter.
- For example, to restrict a search to the current month, use:
- To restrict a search to the time period beginning 6 months ago, use:
- Client is the name of the client for whom you are performing research. For example, the client parameter could be:
If your firm uses client masking, the client parameter is checked against the client mask. If the client parameter does not fit your client mask, the Switch Client page is displayed, and the user has the opportunity to re-enter the client.
Note: Client is an optional parameter. If you do not specify a client, the last client you used in a search using either a URL or by signing in to the LexisNexis services will be used as the client.
- Autosubmit determines whether your search runs immediately (autosubmit=yes) or whether the LexisNexis services displays a completed search form so you can decide whether to proceed with the search or not (autosubmit=no). Valid autosubmit parameters are:
- Autosubmit is an optional parameter. The default is "yes," so if you do not specify the autosubmit parameter, your search will run automatically, with the exceptions described below.
- If you use the searchtype "seltext" to run a "More Like Selected Text" search, and you have the "Allow me to edit my search" option checked under "More Like Selected Text" on the Preferences page, your search will stop at the "More Like Selected Text" form even if you use "Autosubmit=yes" your search will not run automatically.
- If you have the "Allow me to edit my search" option cleared under "More Like Selected Text" on the Preferences page, and you use "Autosubmit=no," your search will stop at the "More Like Selected Text" form the first time you run a "More Like Selected Text" search. Subsequent "More Like Selected Text" searches will run automatically as long as the "Allow me to edit my search" option remains cleared.
- If you want to run a "More Like Selected Text" search automatically (without stopping at the "More Like Selected Text" form), leave the "Allow me to edit my search" option cleared under "More Like Selected Text" on the Preferences page, and use "Autosubmit=yes".
- View determines how your search results are displayed, such as in the FULL format, or in a Cite list. Valid entries for the view parameter are:
For example, the view parameter for viewing your results in a Cite list is:
Note: View is an optional parameter. The default is the view you have set on your LexisNexis services Preferences page.
- There are a few reporters in which an abbreviation recognized by the LEXSEE® feature is identical for both a United States and a Canada reporter. For example, FC is an abbreviation recognized by the LEXSEE feature that is identical for both the Federal Cases (United States) and Federal Court (Canada) reporters.
If you use one of these shared citation formats in a LEXSEE search, the reporter the LEXSEE feature will retrieve is controlled by a country code based on your user ID. Typically, if you are from the United States, your country code is set for the U.S.; if you are from Canada, your country code is set for Canada. Including this country code in your search allows you to use the LEXSEE feature to access the reporter from the other country.
Valid country parameters are:
Note: If you include the country parameter in a search, it overrides the setting on the Preferences Page for "Country Code" for that search only.
- This parameter is used to indicate that you wish to search the Table of Contents of a particular TOC source rather than the full text of that source. If this is an enhanced TOC source (which most are), you would insert the "target=toc" parameter and specify either "Boolean" or "FREESTYLE" (Natural Language) as your search type. However, if the TOC source is not enhanced (uses the original TOC format), you would insert the "target=old" parameter and specify "adf" as your search type.
When used in a URL, the following parameters affect how the LexisNexis services display in your browser.
- By including interface=1 in a URL, the site navigation links and graphics on the top and bottom of the LexisNexis services pages are omitted. Using this parameter results in a display suitable for an intranet page that uses frames. The sample anchor tag below will display the streamlined results of a LEXSEE® search in a frame named "main"
<a href="http://www.lexis.com/research/xlink?interface=1&searchtype=lexsee&search=399+us+926" target="main">399 U.S. 926</a>
To see a sample frameset that integrates the LexisNexis services, click Frames Integration.
- Use the topframe parameter to control whether the graphics at the top of the LexisNexis services are displayed in a frame. If you set topframe to "on," the entire page will scroll; if you set it to "off," the graphics at the top of the screen will remain static, while the contents of the lower frame will scroll. Valid topframe parameters are:
Note: If you include interface=1 parameter in a search, it overrides the topframe=on setting (no graphics are displayed).
- Use the globalnav parameter to control whether the global navigation bar (which displays links to Switch Client, Feedback, Sign Out, and Help) appears at the top of the LexisNexis pages. Valid globalnav parameters are:
Note: If you include interface=1 parameter in a search, it overrides the globalnav=on setting (no graphics are displayed).
- Use the powernav parameter to control whether the power navigation bar appears at the bottom of the LexisNexis pages. The power navigation bar contains the Explore, Page, Doc and Term navigation links for search results, and the Trail, Summary, and Cite Navigation links for a Shepard's® Report. Valid powernav parameters are:
Note: If you include interface=1 parameter in a search, it overrides the powernav=on setting (no graphics are displayed).
- If your search specifies a source that has an enhanced table of contents display, tocdisplay determines whether you'll see the enhanced table of contents for the source or the advanced search form. If you choose to display the enhanced table of contents, you can continue to select from the table of contents until you reach the document you want to view or use the search box to search for specific words or phrases in the source. If you choose to display the Advanced Search form, you can use the additional searching options, such as date restrictions. Valid tocdisplay parameters are:
Note: If you include the tocdisplay parameter in a search, it overrides the setting on the Preferences Page for "Enhanced Table of Contents Display" until you change the parameter using another search or you sign out of the LexisNexis services.
- If your search results include enhanced table of contents documents, you can display the pinpoint reference for any location in them using the floating cite assistant. To do this, while viewing them in Full format, leave the mouse pointer over any location for a moment. Specify whether you want to use the floating cite assistant using the citeassist parameters:
Note: The floating cite assistant is available only on Internet Explorer Version 4.0 and higher browsers.
- When you check a citation using the Shepard's® Citations Service, you can choose to display a quick overview of the way the case has been treated by subsequent case law at the top of the Shepard's® Report (the Shepard's® Summary). Specify whether you want to display the Shepard's® Summary using the summary parameters:
The example below displays the summary and submits the search immediately (without stopping to display the completed search form).
When used in a URL, the following parameters take a user directly to a specific area of the LexisNexis services. These parameters can be used only with certain others. For restrictions, see the description of each parameter.
- Category lets you go to a specific location in the source hierarchy. You can enter a category ID (for example, category=3003903 displays Top News), or use category=top to display beginning of the LexisNexis services source hierarchy. From that point, the user may browse the source hierarchy, select from it, then perform a search as usual. Category IDs for specific locations are displayed on the lower right side of the source hierarchy.
Note: Category can be used alone, with the client parameter, the interface=1 parameter, or followed by the redirect parameter. It may not be used with any other parameter.
- Go takes the user to various places within Research. Valid entries for go include:
Note: Go can be used alone, with the client parameter, the interface=1 parameter, or followed by the redirect parameter. It may not be used with any other parameter.
- Displays the Results History page.
- Displays the list of Alerts (formerly known as ECLIPSE™ searches).
- Displays the Help Table of Contents.
- Displays the user Preferences page.
- Displays the Switch Client page. When the user completes the Switch Client page, the basic search form displays.
- Displays the Switch ID page. When the user completes the Switch ID page, the user's home page displays.
- Signs the user out and displays the Sign-In page.
- Redirect sends the user to a specific location after performing an action. The redirect URL can be to a page on your intranet, a page on the Internet, or another XLINK request. To be valid, the redirect entry must be a full URL (including HTTP://) and must be surrounded by double quotes. Unlike other parameters, which can be included in any order, redirect must be the last parameter on the URL. The redirect parameter can only be used in conjunction with the following four parameters:
When used with the category=top parameter, the redirect URL may contain variables about the source the user selects. This is useful if you are constructing your own search form and want to let users browse the source directory to select sources. The variables that will be replaced when the user selects a source are as follows:
- Users will be redirected after they select a source. For example:
- Users will be redirected after they set their preferences. For example:
- Users will be redirected after they choose a client. For example:
- Users will be redirected after they are signed out. For example:
- Replaced by the lib;file combination. For example:
- Replaced by the long source name. An example for Federal and State Caselaw is:
Example LexisNexis Services Links
- Quick Start
- The example below displays a basic search form with the Today's News source already selected. All the user needs to do is to sign in, enter search terms and click Search.
- Legal Searches
- News Sampler
- Want to keep current on the news headlines? Create a page of links like these:
- The Financials
- Keep up on the markets, U.S. and foreign, using a collection of links like these:
Automatic Display Files (ADFs)
Automatic Display Files are LexisNexis services sources that automatically display information about the source when you select it. In the source directory, ADFs are marked with an arrow on the page icon that is displayed next to the source name.
When you create a search using a URL, you can choose to view the automatic display information, or just to search the source.
- To search the source without viewing the automatic display information, use the Boolean or Natural Language (FREESTYLE™) searchtype (searchtype=Boolean or searchtype=FREESTYLE).
- To view the automatic display information, use the adf searchtype (searchtype=adf)
Note: If you use searchtype=adf, be sure the source you specified is an adf source. These sources are marked in the source hierarchy with this icon:
- To prompt the user to choose whether to view the automatic display information or just search the source, use the adf searchtype in conjunction with the autosubmit parameter, set to "no" (searchtype=adf&autosubmit=no).
- To display the automatic display information without prompting the user, use the adf searchtype in conjunction with the autosubmit parameter, set to "yes" (searchtype=adf&autosubmit=yes). The default for the autosubmit parameter is "yes," so using only searchtype=adf without specifying the autosubmit parameter also displays the automatic display information without prompting the user.
Note: Some sources display an automatic display file even if you use searchtype=Boolean or searchtype=FREESTYLE due to legal constraints required by our vendors. After reading the automatic display information, the user can click Continue Search at the top of the page to view the search results.
Searching Multiple Sources
Some related sources can be combined so you can search them together. For example, you may want to search in legal cases in Ohio and Kentucky, or in statutes from more than one state. Type the library name separated with semicolons, then type the combinable files separated by commas. You can also add dot commands for formats, such as .ci (Cite view) or .fu (Full view). You may be familiar with this "command stacking" method of searching from having used our classic LexisNexis services.
Using standard HTML, you can create a form that lets your users enter search terms and connectors, then click a button to submit the search. You can develop forms that already have the source, search and other parameters selected, or forms that prompt for these parameters. Users are prompted for their LexisNexis services ID and password when the search is submitted.
Searches submitted with forms use standard search logic; you do not need to replace spaces with plus signs, and you can use connectors and wild cards as you normally would.
You don't need to specify all 8 searching parameters in a form; defaults will be used for any parameter you don't use. For example, Boolean will be used if you don't specify the searchtype parameter.
Other notes about creating forms for searching with the LexisNexis services:
- The form must use the GET method instead of the POST method.
- The form action should be http://www.lexis.com/research/xlink. Do not put a question mark after "xlink" (unlike you do for links).
- Use the same parameter names and values as you would for a link.
Samples of search forms follow, with the HTML text used to create them. To create more detailed forms, see an HTML reference.
With the form below, users can enter a Boolean search in the text box, including connectors, just as they do when using the LexisNexis services. Users then click Search to submit the search.
The HTML code that produces the form above is:
<form method="GET" name="form1"action="http://www.lexis.com/research/xlink">
<input type="hidden" name="source" value="mega;mega">
<input type="text" name="search" size="40">
<input type="submit" value="Search" name="Button1">
On the form below, users who know the LexisNexis services LIB;FILE combinations can enter the library and file in which they want to search, enter their search terms, then select the type search they want to use from a drop-down list.
The HTML code that produces the form above is:
<form method="GET" action="http://www.lexis.com/research/xlink"name="form2">
LIB;FILE <input type="text" name="source"size="13"> Terms<input type="text"
name="search" size="20"><select name="searchtype"size="1">
<option selected value="Boolean">Boolean</option>
</select><input type="submit" value="Search"name="Button1">
The form below lets users enter a citation, then select the citator they want to use from a drop-down list.
The HTML code that produces the form above is:
<form method="GET" name="citationform"action="http://www.lexis.com/research/xlink">
<select name="searchtype" size="1">
<option selected value="Lexsee">Lexsee</option>
<input type="text" name="search" size="20">
<input type="submit" value="Search" name="Button1">
The following is an example of a form that a tax department might create that includes a drop-down list of sources and a client text box. This is an example of a more elaborate form that you might create using an HTML reference. This form uses tables and cell coloring.
Embedded Search Syntax
To let users run more targeted searches without being expert in using LexisNexis search syntax, you can include extra search syntax and the logic to control it in your custom search forms.
For example, you can create a form that runs a segment search for the user. To do this, place the value of a field in a form into the search field using a dollar sign followed by the field name. In the example below, the user types search terms into a field called "userinput." In the search field, $userinput is then used as part of a HEADLINE segment search. If the user types "michael jordan," the string that is sent to the search engine is headline(michael jordan).
Search the HEADLINE segment of the New York Times:
The HTML code that produces the form above is:
<input type="hidden" name="source" value="news;nyt">
Terms: <input type="text" name="userinput" size="20">
<input type="hidden" name="search"value="headline($userinput)">
<input type="submit" value="Submit" name="B1">
You can create a form that is designed to search on multiple segments, but will run a search whether the user provides information for all the segments or only one segment. This form includes a portion of the search string only when the user has entered information in a certain field. If the user provides information for all the segments, the segment search is run with an implied "and" between the segments.
Enclosed in brackets in the search field, type the field name followed by a slash followed by the search string you want to submit if the user has entered something into the field. For example, [fieldname/search string to submit if field is answered]. In the example, below, if the user typed "clinton w/5 scandal" into the "lead" field and left the "headline" field blank, the string that would be sent to the search engine is lead(clinton w/5 scandal).
Search multiple optional segments in the New York Times
(implied "and" between the two segments if both are answered):
The HTML code that produces the form above is:
name="source" value="news;nyt">Headline:<input type="text" name="field1" size="20">
Lead:<input type="text" name="field2" size="20">
<input type="hidden" name="search"value="[field1/headline($field1)][field2/lead($field2)]">
<input type="submit" value="Search" name="B1">
The form below sends a different search depending on which fields the user has completed. The form inserts different search syntax based on the combination of fields the user filled out.
To the left of the slash (/), place a plus sign (+) in front of field names that must contain data and a minus sign (-) in front of fields that must be empty in order to send the specified string. Here are some examples:
Field 1 is filled in but field 2 is not: [field1-field2/search string A]
Field 2 is filled in but field 1 is not: [field2-field1/search string B]
Both fields are filled in: [field1+field2/search string C]
Here is a sample "Company Search" form:
The value of the search field in the form above that inserts different search syntax depending on which fields the user has completed is:
[after-before/and date geq ($after)]
[before-after/and date leq($before)]
[before+after/and date geq ($after) and date leq($before)]
Using the interface=1 parameter, you can create links from one frame that open the LexisNexis services with a streamlined interface in another frame. To see a sample frameset that integrates the LexisNexis services, click here. To download the files that make up this sample frameset, click here.