Westlaw tip: Search state ADMIN databases for more complete results

November 5, 2010

Q&AQ: I need guidance from New York state agencies regarding the retaliatory tax that New York imposes on insurance companies from other states. I found one New York statute that seemed applicable, and I clicked Citing References. Am I done?

A: Maybe, maybe not. Your KeyCite citing references result lists only those documents that cite the statute you retrieved. To identify documents that do not cite your statute, e.g., documents citing a related statute or a statute that no longer exists, you will need to search agency decisions directly.

But which decisions? This issue might be addressed in insurance bulletins, tax appeals, attorney general opinions, and who knows what else.

Your best bet is to search the New York Administrative Decisions database (NY-ADMIN), which was just released on November 2. NY-ADMIN is one of the new state administrative decision databases, each of which contains documents from all agencies in a state or jurisdiction. (Each of these databases uses the identifier XX-ADMIN, where XX is the jurisdiction’s two-letter postal abbreviation.) A single search can retrieve administrative appeals, no-action letters, professional responsibility board rulings, insurance bulletins, attorney general opinions, and other state administrative decisions that discuss your issue.

Enhanced XX-ADMIN databases are currently available for 45 jurisdictions, including New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah, Washington, West Virginia, and Wyoming.