How do I find if/how a particular jurisdiction has adopted or implemented a Restatement of the law?

For example, Restatement (2nd) of Torts §912 goes on at some length about standards that apply to claiming damages for tortious conduct. I want to know what is the current case law concerning that in New York. I have seen some courts in some states explicitly adopt provisions in the Restatements, but in this example a web search doesn't turn up anything particular to New York.

(I have seen suggestions that Lexis or WestLaw are good for this, but it appears that the only way to access those is to either subscribe, which they only allow lawyers to do, or to find a library that subscribes. Right now I'm in a rural area and I've called every courthouse and library within a day's ride and none offer access.)

  • 1
    I think anyone can subscribe to Westlaw. It’s just expensive. Oct 17, 2022 at 22:21

1 Answer 1


Apart from the comments this states: "One to whom another has tortiously caused harm is entitled to compensatory damages for the harm if, but only if, he establishes by proof the extent of the harm and the amount of money representing adequate compensation with as much certainty as the nature of the tort and the circumstances permit."

In this specific case, there are two citations in New York State courts (both from trial courts) to the section you mention which are listed in up to date annotations of that restatement section. They are:

Caribbean Const. Services & Associates, Inc. v. Zurich Ins. Co., 286 A.D.2d 218, 729 N.Y.S.2d 27, 29 (2001).

Tischler v. Dimenna, 160 Misc.2d 525, 538, 609 N.Y.S.2d 1002, 1009 (1994).

You could look for cases citing those cases to expand on the general principle if any, or look to the New York State appellate court cases that they cite for the same proposition.

There are no federal appellate court citations to it arising out of federal trial courts in New York state cases.

The Restatements themselves are published with pocket parts that show additional citations to them, but not all courthouse and local libraries would have an updated set of Restatements.

Finding a case that cited to a section and then using the West keynote system (which assigns a subject matter code to each headnote) to look in a West digest on that key number (which arranges head notes by key number and presents them in encyclopedia form) is another approach.

Another approach which doesn't leverage the Restatements is to look for standard jury instructions in New York State for tort damages.

  • I happen to have hardcopies of the Restatements (2nd), but nothing containing those citations. Assuming I don't have access to a library and I'm not a lawyer, are there any other means by which I can get those notes, "pocket parts," etc.?
    – Lysander
    Oct 17, 2022 at 20:33
  • 1
    @Lysander You can buy them from the publisher. Maybe somebody would sell them used somewhere.
    – ohwilleke
    Oct 17, 2022 at 23:25
  • I see them here – that's quite an investment!
    – Lysander
    Oct 19, 2022 at 16:50
  • 2
    @Lysander I personally have deep issues with the price and access to these as they are used by courts as a source of substantive laws and created by non-profits but are not publicly available on an open source or library free use basis to many people affected by them.
    – ohwilleke
    Oct 19, 2022 at 18:07

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .