22 Quantum Services

Quantum services

If the answer to your research is a number, then a quantum service is the source to use (with the caveat that quantum services do not exist for every possible situation).  Quantum services exist because searching for “how much”/“how long” is not efficient, especially when we aren’t necessarily familiar with which aspects of a situation may influence the outcome, and which may not. Quantum services are tools to help you (more) easily determine the amount of something, usually the amount of time (sentencing), money (fines, damages), or both (spousal or child support).

Quantum services tend to be focused on one topic, but this topic can range in scope from something reasonably general, to quite specific. Examples of quantum services with a larger scope would be those that address personal injury damages (usually arranged by body part), criminal sentencing (usually arranged by section of act being contravened), or child support. More focused quantum services include medical negligence, defamation, and environmental offences.

As quantum services exist to convey a number to their readers, this number usually takes pride of place in an entry, and is usually found at the top of a record, and/or bolded. However, it is rare for a quantum service to not also have some form of accompanying text, even if in point form: There is almost never a one to one relationship between a situation/offence, and the resulting number. There are always factors that influence a number (this is why there are cases on these topics… It is not so simple as A=B). Therefore, as much as quantum services are numbers-based, there is nearly always accompanying explanatory text including key factors that influence the number. This can range from a few point form notes, to fairly extensive narrative description.

There are a range of quantum services on Lexis+ (video) and Westlaw Next Canada (video on Litigator quantum services, but also see How to find digests of sentencing quantum decisions).

How you use a given quantum service depends on its arrangement. Many quantum services are browsable via “tree” structure, which allows you to drill down through relevant “+” menus and then scan for key information in case digests. Others are accessed via a fillable form, where you can input all relevant information (that you have available), and then get a specific result/number, accompanied by supporting case digests.


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Legal Research - A Practical Perspective Copyright © 2022 by Meris Bray is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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