Free Legal Web Resources -- By Subject


The following is a list of links to freely available internet-based legal resources selected by librarians at MacMillan Law Library and arranged by subject areas. For more detailed information about the resources contained herein, return to the alphabetical list here: Free Legal Web Resources -- Alphabetical

 

 

 

 

 

 

U.S. Federal Primary Sources


 

 

Administrative Decisions and Documents

Administrative Decisions by Agency - Links to publicly accessible databases of administrative decisions and rulings and FOIA reading rooms that fall outside of the scope of materials available in the Federal Register and the Code of Federal Regulations. Maintained by the University of Virginia Library.

Data.gov - Data.gov increases the ability of the public to easily find, download and use high value, machine readable datasets generated by the executive branch of the federal government. The site provides descriptions of the datasets, information about how to access them, and tools that leverage the datasets.

Forms.gov - Agency List on Forms.gov ("the U.S. government's official hub for federal forms") provides convenient list of federal agencies with numerous links to related downloadable forms.

USA.gov - Exhaustive A to Z agency index on the U.S. Government's official web portal with regularly updated links to the agencies.

WashLaw - Washburn University School of Law's index of federal agencies with links to relevant home, publications, and library pages.

 

Executive Branch Materials

C-SPAN - Non-profit cable organization's index of U.S. Presidential State of the Union addresses with transcripts back to 1945 and video files where available.

FDsys - Federal Digital System of the U.S. Government Printing Office includes official versions of such executive branch publications as the Budget of the United States Government, Economic Report of the President, the Weekly and Daily Compilation of Presidential Documents, and the Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, in most cases from the mid-1990s to the present.

    National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) - Disposition Tables of Executive Orders of the President along with full text beginning with 1936 to the present maintained by the National Archives website.

    Whitehouse.gov - Official online White House Briefing Room providing timely information about the president's latest events and public statements.

     

    Federal Case Law

    Findlaw for Legal Professionals - Cases and Codes on FindLaw is West's portal for freely available federal case law including supreme court cases since 1893 and some recent federal circuit and appeals case law.

    FOIA Project - Nonprofit organization aims to bring greater transparency and accountability to the Freedom of Information Act process by building a database of documents from FOIA cases against government defendants brought in district court.

    Google Scholar - The Legal Opinions and Journals option within Google Scholar searches across freely available U.S. Supreme Court cases and some secondary law journal material where available.

    Justia - Freely available searchable database of all US Supreme Court Opinions, all US Federal Appellate cases since 1950, and select Federal District Court opinions.

    LexisONE Community - Lexis's freely available case law database including supreme court opinions from 1781 to present and the last 10 years of select federal and state case law.

    Public Library of Law - Another source of freely available federal case law including all supreme court opinions and select lower federal court materials from 1950 to the present.

    Supreme Court of the United States - Official web site of the U.S. Supreme Court includes latest slip opinions and full opinions back to 1991 along with docket information, rules, briefs, orders and the Journal of the Supreme Court.

     

    Federal Legislative History

    American Memory: A Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation - Full text of select U.S. Congressional documents and reports between 1833 and 1917 available along with early House and Senate Journals, Bills, Congressional Record and its predecessors at this project site maintained by the Library of Congress.

    FDsys - Federal Digital System of the U.S. Government Printing Office includes official versions of such Congressional publications as the Congressional Record (bound & daily editions), reports, documents, and bills from the mid-1990s to present.

    Govtrack - Freely available tool developed to help members of the public the research and track the activities of the U.S. Congress.

    LLSDC's Legislative Sourcebook - Law Librarians' Society of D.C. handbook for all things congressional and legislative history related, in particular Rick McKinney's practitioner's guide to federal legislative history research.

    THOMAS - Official congressional website maintained by the Library of Congress for delivering real time information on the daily business of the U.S. Congress from 1987 to present.

     

    Federal Regulations

    E-CFR - Electronic Code of Federal Regulations (e-CFR) is non-official but daily updated version of the CFR still maintained on the GPO Access platform.

    FDsys - Federal Digital System of the U.S. Government Printing Office includes official versions of such regulatory related publications as the Federal Register, Code of Federal Regulations, and the List of CFR Sections Affected from the mid-1990s to present.

    Justia - Justia's Regulation Tracker tool provides the ability to track any and all proclamations, executive orders, administrative orders, rules, proposed rules, and notices related to regulation from 2005 to present.

    Office of the Federal Register - The Public Inspection Desk on the Office of the Federal Register web site provides daily updates with the latest information to be published in the Federal Register.

    Regulations.gov - Maintained by the federal government, this web site is devoted to providing regulatory information from nearly 300 federal agencies and allows for searching, submission of comments, applications, petitions, or adjudication documents as well as having e-mail and RSS feed alert capabilities.

    OpenRegs - A private, non-profit alternative to the government's Regulations.gov portal with similar search and notification capabilities but with purportedly greater ease of interpretation and use.

     

    Judicial Materials

    LII/Legal Information Institute - Cornell's Legal Information Institute provides unofficial online versions of the latest various Federal Rules documents for appellate, bankruptcy, civil and criminal procedures and evidence.

    Oyez - The Oyez Project is a multimedia archive devoted to the work of the U.S. Supreme Court and aims to be a complete source of all audio recorded in the court since 1955.

    Supreme Court Database - The database contains detailed information about US Supreme Court cases decided since 1953 and available for download in as many as seven different file types.

    United States Courts - Home page for the Administrative Office of the United States Courts and includes authoritative information and links to all things related to the federal judiciary.

     

    U.S. Code and Public Laws

    American Memory: A Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation - Digitized versions of the first 18 volumes of the Statutes at Large series covering 1789-1875 maintained by the Library of Congress' American Memory Project.

    FDsys - Federal Digital System of the U.S. Government Printing Office includes official versions of such code related publications as the Public and Private Laws series, the Statutes at Large Series as well as the Official U.S. Code all from the mid-1990s to present.

    LII/Legal Information Institute - Cornell's Legal Information Institute provides a widely used version of the U.S. Code generated by the most recent official version made available by the U.S. House of Representatives. The code is fully searchable and includes a Table of Popular Names.

    Office of the Law Revision Counsel - Regularly updated version of the U.S. Code maintained by the U.S. House of Representatives.

    THOMAS - Official web site of the U.S. Congress provides searchable bill text from 101st Congress (1989) to present and summaries of bills back to the 93rd Congress (1973).

     

    U.S. Constitution

    FDSys - Federal Digital System of the U.S. Government Printing Office provides full text of the 1992 and 2002 editions of The Constitution of the United States of America: Analysis and Interpretation document and all intervening supplements.

    National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) - The National Archives web site maintains a digitized copy of the U.S. Constitution along with the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights on its "Charters of Freedom" page.

     

    U.S. Treaties

    THOMAS - The treaties database on THOMAS includes summaries of treaties and all "advice and consent" document text from the U.S. Senate for treaties back to the 90th Congress (1967).

    Office of Treaty Affairs - U.S. Department of State website maintains current version of Treaties in Force document and text of selected treaties signed by the U.S. back to 1996.

    FDSys - Federal Digital System of the U.S. Government Printing Office provides text of Senate Treaty Documents from the mid 1980s to present.

     

     

    U.S. State & Local Primary Sources


     

     

    Georgia Law

    Georgia Legislative Documents - Digitized collection of the Acts of the General Assembly of the State of Georgia between 1799-1999 available via the GALILEO initiative.

    Attorney General's Opinions- Official and Unofficial opinions of the Attorney General of the State of Georgia from 1994 to present available via the state government's official portal Georgia.gov.

    Bill Tracking - Judicial Branch of Georgia's web site devoted to tracking active legislation through the Georgia House and Senate during terms of the General Assembly.

    Georgia General Assembly - Official web site of the Georgia House of Representatives and Senate provides legislation from 1995 to present.

    Constitution of the State of Georgia - Official version of the Constitution of the State of Georgia maintained on the website of the Secretary of State.

    Official Code of Georgia - Freely available official electronic version of the state code provided via Lexis-Nexis by the Office of the Secretary of State.

    Rules and Regulations of the State of Georgia - Freely available official electronic version of the rules and regulations of Georgia provided by the Office of the Secretary of State.

    Peach Sheets - Annual publication of the Georgia State University Law Review providing legislative history of select state laws passed by the General Assembly from 2000 to present.

    Opinions and Summaries of Supreme Court of Georgia - Official opinions and summaries as maintained on the website of the Supreme Court of Georgia from 2008 to present.

    DeKalb County Code - Official freely available electronic version of the DeKalb County Code of Ordinances available via Municode.com.

    Fulton County Code - Official freely available electronic version of the Fulton County Code of Ordinances available via Municode.com.

    City of Atlanta Code - Official freely available electronic version of the Atlanta Code of Ordinances available via Municode.com.

     

    Law of Other States

    BRB's Free Resource Center - Web portal maintained by BRB Publications, Inc. providing links to freely available public records online where available.

    Justia - Portal for links to legal resources, statistics, education, property/housing and more for all 50 states.

    Law Library of Congress - Research guide maintained by the Law Library of Congress with relevant links to all 50 states and territories and a list of authoritative Legal Links covering state law in general.

    LII/Legal Information Institute - Cornell's Legal Information Institute provides links to state law materials including a useful listing by jurisdiction and a topical index of state statutes.

    Municode Library - Commercial publisher Municode contracts with many states to provide free access to laws and statutes of various municipalities and are collected here.

    Public Library of Law - The "advanced options" feature of the case law search provides the ability to search freely available state supreme and appeals courts case law from 1997 to present.

    State Legislative History Research Guides on the Web - Indiana University's Mauer School of Law maintains this list of links to various legislative history research guides for all 50 states.

     

     

    Foreign Law and International Sources


     

     

    European Union Law

    Eur-Lex - Database providing electronic access to the Official Journal of the European Union and other various public documents and law of the EU with select coverage dating as far back as 1951 to the present.

    EU Legislation and Treaties - Europa, the primary web presence of the EU, provides links to research guides about different legislative procedures and databases that include the primary materials of European Union law.

    Official Documents from the EU - Europa, the primary web presence of the EU, provides links to official papers from EU institutions and bodies from decisions by the European Ombudsman to speeches by the President of the European Parliament.

    Curia - Online home of the European Court of Justice with a searchable database of case law from the Court of Justice, General Court, and Civil Service Tribunal from 1997 to present.

     

    Law of Other Countries

    Constitution Finder - Maintained by members of the University of Richmond School of Law on a voluntary basis, this portal offers links to freely available electronic versions of national constitutions from around the world.

    EISIL (Electronic Information System for International Law) - Developed by the American Society of International Law, EISIL collates primary materials, authoritative web sites and research guides on international law.

    GlobaLex - Electronic legal publication produced at NYU School of Law and dedicated to the dissemination of high quality international, foreign, and comparative law research tools.

    Global Legal Information Network - Maintained by the Law Library of Congress, the Global Legal Information Network (GLIN) is a public database of official texts of laws, regulations, judicial decisions, and other complementary legal sources contributed by governmental agencies and international organizations.

    Global Legal Monitor - Maintained by the Law Library of Congress, the Global Legal Monitor is a frequently updated online publication covering legal news and developments worldwide.

    Nations of the World - Part of the Law Library of Congress' Guide to Law Online, this guide collects available links to constitutions, executive, legislative and judicial branches, and general legal guides and sources for countries all over the world.

      World LII - The World Legal Information Institute (WorldLII) is a free, independent and non-profit global legal research facility developed collaboratively by a collective of national-based Legal Information Institutes and various other organizations.

       

      Research Guides (Foreign & Int'l Law)

      ASIL Electronic Resource Guide - Continuously updated and expanded online research guide for international law published by the American Society of International Law.

        LLRX - Archive of freely available articles on comparative and/or foreign law topics from llrx.com.

            WashLaw's International & Foreign Law by Subject - Portal of links to freely available electronic research guides in foreign and international law browseable by subject or region.

             

            Treaties (International)

            EISIL Treaty Collections - This subcategory of EISIL includes links to collections of treaties and agreements associated with a particular region, organization or treaty secretariat.

            ICRC Customary International Humanitarian Law Database - This database maintained by the International Committee of the Red Cross offers a comprehensive analysis of the customary rules of international humanitarian law and contains summaries of underlying practice.

            Multilaterals Project - This project, based at Tufts University, attempts to make available the texts of international multilateral conventions and other instruments and includes treaties in the fields of environmentalism, human rights, commerce and trade, war and arms control, and other areas.

            EU Treaties Office Database - This database contains all the bilateral and multilateral treaties or agreements concluded by the European Union, the European Atomic Energy Community, and the former European Coal and Steel Community, and those concluded under the Treaty of the European Union.

            United Nations Treaty Collection - This database includes treaties and international agreements registered or filed and recorded with and published by the Secretariat of the UN since 1946 and provides information on the status of over 500 major multilateral instruments deposited with the Secretary-General of the United Nations (as of 1 January 2009.

             

            United Nations

            International Court of Justice - Website of the UN sponsored International Court of Justice includes information about the court including the latest decisions, press releases, and various other basic documents and publications.

            UN Documents - This United Nations page includes quick links to highly sought publications as well as links and guides to all of the organization's major electronic research tools including the Official Document System (ODS), the UN Bibliographic Information System (UNBISnet), and UN Info Quest (UN-I-QUE).

            UN Documentation Research Guide - This guide produced by the United Nations Dag Hammarskjold Library is an essential first step in understanding and deciphering the unique tools and citation style of UN publications.

             

              Secondary Sources


               

               

              Dictionaries, Encyclopedias and Citation Manuals

              Duhaime.org - Popular web based legal dictionary begun and maintained by Canadian lawyer Lloyd Duhaime.

                Findlaw's Law Dictionary - Freely available legal dictionary from the non-subscription based arm of West publishing.

                  Wex - Community built, freely available legal dictionary and encyclopedia from Cornell University's Legal Information Institute.

                  Report on Authentication of Online Legal Resources - This ongoing project of the American Association of Law Librarians' (AALL) Electronic Legal Information Access & Citation Committee provides updates on authentication and official status of electronic versions of primary legal publications for all 50 states.

                  Zimmerman's Research Guide - Freely available online legal encyclopedia hosted by LexisNexis.

                   

                  Law Reviews

                  ABA Free Full-text Online Law Review/Law Journal Search Engine - A free search engine which searches across over 350 freely available online law reviews, law journals, and document repositories.

                  Law Journals: Submissions and Rankings - This database developed and hosted by Washington and Lee University School of Law allows one to search law journals by subject, country, or journal rank (where available), to display journal editorial information, and to facilitate article submission to those journals.

                    Legal News and Technology

                    Findlaw for Legal Professionals - West Publishing's free site offers links to the latest national headlines as well as a collection of regular writers under the Legal Commentary Network.

                        The Mighell Marker - Formerly known as the Internet Legal Research Weekly and delivered freely via the Inter Alia web site, this newsletter focuses on "relevant and timely" legal research information.

                          Jurist: Legal News and Research - Website maintained by the University of Pittsburgh School of Law provides daily updated links to legal news and original content.

                            BlawgSearch - Justia maintains a searchable directory of law related blogs, including audio podcast blogs, as well as links to similar blog directories.

                              Global Legal Monitor - Maintained by the Law Library of Congress, the Global Legal Monitor is a frequently updated online publication covering legal news and developments worldwide.

                              Law.com - From the publishers of The American Lawyer and the National Law Journal, this ALM site provides regularly updated content and links to a variety of legal news topics.

                              Legal Talk Network - Online company providing original content legal related audio podcasts since 2005.

                              LawLink - Founded in 2007, LawLink bills itself as the premier social network for the legal community with over 8000 members and over 150000 unique visitors per month.

                               

                                Research Guides

                                Emory Law Subject Guides - Collection of research guides on a variety of topics developed by librarians at Emory University Law Library containing useful summaries and links to content.

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