Friday, September 22, 2023 - 11:02am

Law Library

The Stephen H. Grimes Law Library, located on the 3rd floor of the Bartow Courthouse, serves the local legal community and members of the public. Our librarians are always available to assist patrons with their legal research needs. Please note that the law library is not involved whatsoever with court cases. If you need assistance with filing papers or looking up court filings, please visit the Polk County Clerk of Court.

PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING BEFORE CONTACTING OUR REFERENCE STAFF FOR ASSISTANCE

Law library staff CAN:

  • Answer questions regarding the library and its collection
  • Refer patrons to appropriate agencies
  • Suggest lawyer referral resources
  • Assist in locating relevant printed legal resources within the library such as statutes, cases, court rules, legal encyclopedias, form books, and treatises
  • Instruct as to how to use these print resources effectively
  • Demonstrate how to locate and use online legal resources such as Westlaw and Lexis
  • Assist in locating law-related materials using specific citations

Law library staff CANNOT:

  • Explain how to file a document, what document to file, or how to proceed with court actions
  • Intervene with a judge or court on any party's behalf
  • Recommend the use of any particular legal form for any particular purpose, or assist in filling out any legal form
  • Advise any patron on legal rights or liabilities; legal procedure and court rules; or the meaning of a statute, regulation, case, or other legal resource, or how it might impact a particular situation or case
  • Perform research on behalf of a patron
  • Recommend a particular attorney or law firm
  • Perform any other action that could, in the opinion of the staff member, be construed as providing legal advice

Contact Information

Hours: 8:30-4:30, Monday-Friday
Phone: (863) 534-4013
Fax: (863) 534-4514
Email: lawlibrary@jud10.flcourts.org
Address: Polk County Courthouse
3rd floor
255 N Broadway Ave.
Bartow, FL 33830

Library Collection

Members of the public are welcome to use the law library’s collection during business hours, but loans are limited to members of the Florida Bar (attorneys and registered paralegals). Circulating materials include CLEs (on CD) and practice treatises. Non-circulating materials may be checked out on a case-by-case basis at the discretion of law library staff.

Conference Rooms/Video Conferencing

We have one conference room (Workroom D) as well as a room set up for video conferences (Workroom F). The rooms are available on a first-come, first-serve basis unless reserved in advance. Please e-mail or call us for reservations.

Technology

We have 5 PCs available for public use. We also have a public Wi-Fi network (free to all patrons) as well as a secured Wi-Fi network (free to members of the Florida Bar—ask a librarian for the password). Westlaw and Lexis are accessible on both our computers and laptops connected to library Wi-Fi. Westlaw can be accessed here and Lexis can be accessed here. We have limitations on how many people can access each site at one time, so please be sure to sign out of the platform before closing out of the browser.

Disclaimer: Library staff cannot do anything which might, in the opinion of the staff member, constitute the unauthorized practice of law, under section 454.23, Florida Statutes. Because of the complicated nature of many legal problems, the services of a qualified attorney might be required. Information provided by the law library staff is not a substitute for legal advice.

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