Precedent Document and Clause Search


Bloomberg’s proprietary precedent database gives you access to over 800,000 legal documents that top practitioners used in real transactions and filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission through EDGAR. The precedent documents in the precedent database have been analyzed and classified according to a number of helpful criteria so you can find transaction precedents specifically tailored to your needs.  

You can search for precedent documents and clauses by document type, clause title (clause search only), keyword, date, transaction type, governing law, SIC industry, party, law firm and attorney. Additionally, a robust set of filters lets you narrow your results to the exact precedent that you need. 

How to Access Precedent Search

To access the Precedent search, from the Bloomberg Law Menu, select Corporate & Transactional and then click Precedent Documents.

Search the over 600 document types in the precedent database or, for a more precise search of M&A Purchase Agreements, Underwriting Agreements or Credit & Loan agreements select the appropriate tab at the top of screen.

The search options change based on the selected tab, facilitating a more tailored search.

 

Additionally, use the Result Type radial button to toggle between the clause and document search.  

Select By Document Type

From the Document Type filter, click Select Doc Types and either scroll through the list of document types or begin typing a document type to narrow the scrollable list. Use the “>” expanders to see additional associated document types.

Select one or more document types over which to run a search. Any selected document types will appear below the Doc Type list.

Remove a selection by clicking on the checkbox next to the document type in the Doc Type list or clicking the “x” button next to the “Selected” list below the Doc Type list.

Save a document type as a Favorite by clicking the star button next to the document type in the Doc Type list.

For more information on a specific document type, click on the relevant info button in the Doc Type list.  

Search By Transaction Type

From the Transaction Type filter, click Select Transactions and either scroll through the list of transaction types or begin typing a transaction type to narrow the scrollable list.

Select one or more transaction types over which to run a search. Any selected transaction types will appear below the Transaction Type list.

Remove a selection by clicking on the checkbox next to the transaction type in the Transaction Type list or clicking the “x” button next to the “Selected” list below the Transaction Type list.

Save a transaction type as a Favorite by clicking the star button next to the transaction type in the Transaction Type list.   

Search for Specific Clauses

From the Result Type filter, select either Whole Documents to search for whole precedent documents, or select Single Clauses to search for specific clauses within a document.

Selecting the Single Clauses radial button adds a search field for clause title.

To search by clause title, type in the exact name of a clause in quotation marks or using Boolean search terms. 

Search By SIC Industry

From the SIC Industry filter, click Select Industries and either scroll through the list of industry types or begin typing the name or Standard Industrial Classification (“SIC”) code number of the classification.

Select one or more industry types over which to run a search. Any selected industry types will appear below the SIC Industry list.

Remove a selection by clicking on the checkbox next to the industry type in the SIC Industry list or clicking the “x” button next to the “Selected” list below the SIC Industry list.

Save an industry type as a Favorite by clicking the star button next to the industry type in the SIC Industry list.

Search By Governing Law

From the Governing Law filter, click Select Jurisdictions and type the name of the jurisdiction in this field.

Select one or more jurisdictions from the autocomplete field. Any selected jurisdictions will appear below the Governing Law search box.

Remove a selection by clicking the “x” button next to “Selected”. If more than one jurisdiction is selected, click the down arrow to see the selected jurisdictions and click the “x” button next to the jurisdiction’s name to remove it from the list.   

Search By Filing Date

From the Filing Date dropdown menu, select the desired date range. The menu defaults to “Any” which means that all dates will be included. The Filing Date menu has the following options:

 

  • Single Date - Enter a single date
  • Date Range - Enter a To and From date
  • Last 7 Days
  • Last 30 Days
  • Last 12 Months
  • Last 5 Years
Search By Document Name

From the Document Name textbox, enter specific name or title of the document (e.g. Technology License Agreement). The document name may be entered directly (e.g., “Technology License Agreement”) or using Boolean search operators (e.g. technology n/3 license).  

Search By Party Name

From the Parties textbox, enter the desired party’s name and click the “+” button to add as a search parameter. Any entered names will appear below the Parties box. Remove an entered party’s name by clicking the “x” button next to that party’s name. Multiple party names may be entered by either:

  • Using Boolean search operators. Example: IBM OR Microsoft; or
  • Entering each party name individually, clicking the “+” button after each entry. Note that searching in this way is the same as using the Boolean AND operator – all of the names entered must be party to the same agreement or have issued the same prospectus.
Search By Law Firm

From the Law Firms box, enter the name of a law firm that worked on the transaction or document and click the “+” button to add as a search parameter. Any entered law firms will appear below the Law Firms box. Remove an entered law firm by clicking the “x” button next to that law firm’s name. Multiple law firms may be entered by either:

  • Using Boolean search operators. Example: Latham OR Skadden; or
  • Entering each law firm individually, clicking the “+” button after each entry. Note that searching in this way is the same as using the Boolean AND operator – all of the law firms entered must be associated with the same document. 
Additional Search Criteria for Specific Documents 

The Precedent search includes additional search criteria for M&A Purchase Agreements, Underwriting Agreement & Prospectuses and Credit & Loan Agreements.

To conduct a search for these precedent types, select the relevant tab from at the top of Precedent search tool. In addition to the search features discussed here, these tabs contain additional fields relevant to the specific selection (i.e., Deal Size for M&A Purchase Agreements).