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American Law Has Both an Abstract and a Concrete Facet; Only the Latter Constitutes the Object of Legal Research

Legal Norms Are Dynamic -- The Impact of Judicial and Congressional Scrutiny

  1. Judicial and Congressional Review of Statutory Rules

  2. Judicial and Congressional Review of Court Decisions

  3. Judicial Review of Administrative Decisions

The U.S. Legal System-A Common Law System

The Lawmaking Branches of the Government

  1. Federal and State Legislatures

  2. Federal and State Courts

3. The Executive Branch. Independent Administrative Agencies


On Secondary Sources

The How, When, and Why of Each Type of Secondary Sources - Research-Aid Tools

  1. Legal Dictionaries

  2. Citations Guides

  3. Legal Research Guides

The How, When, and Why of Each Type of Secondary Sources - Finding-Aid Tools

  1. Library Catalogs and More

  2. Index to Legal Periodicals and More

The How, When, and Why of Each Type of Secondary Sources - Legal Scholarship and Other Legal Commentaries and Analysis
  1. Treatises and Other Legal Monographs

  2. Law Review Articles

  3. Other Sources of Legal Commentary and Analysis

On Primary Sources

Primary Sources & Their Repositories: The How, When, and Why of Each Type of Primary Source Repositories

Finding Repositories of Primary Sources

  1. The Federal Constitution and Its Multiple Repositories

  2. Repositories of Federal and State Statutory Law and of Municipal Ordinances

  3. Locating Repositories of Federal or State Case Law

  4. Locating Repositories of Administrative Rules, Regulations, and Decisions

Identifying Specific Primary Sources Within Specific Legal Repositories

Completing Your Research

Introduction to Statutory Law

The Legislative Process and Its Constitutional Boundaries

The Legislative Process. Brief Review

Identifying the Sources of Statutory Law

  1. The Constitution of the United States

  2. Federal Statutes

  3. State Constitutions and Statutes

  4. Municipal Ordinances

Applying Legislation: Interpreting Statutes

  1. The “Plain Meaning Rule”

  2. Interpreting Statutes in Light of Their Legislative History

  3. The Purposive Analysis: The “Social Purpose” Rule

How to Locate Statutory Law

Completing Your Statutory Research

Introduction to Case law Research

Court Opinions - The End Result of a Lawsuit

  1. The Pleading Stage

  2. The Discovery Stage

  3. The Trial Stage

  4. The Verdict

  5. The Appeal Stage

Case Law-The Principle of Stare Decisis

How Does the Principle of Stare Decisis Work?

Problems with Stare Decisis

Repositories of Case Dockets and Case Law

How to Locate Case Law

Completing Your Case law Research

Introduction to Administrative Law Research

Administrative Rulemaking or Rule Promulgation

Administrative Adjudication

Repositories of Administrative Law

How to Locate Specific Primary Sources of Administrative Law

Completing Your Research - Make Sure Your Administrative Law Results Are Still Good Law

  • U.S. Law and International Law

Introduction to Public International Law - Actors, Roles and Rules

  1. How to Research Treaties

  2. How to Research Cases from International Courts

  3. How to Research Customary Law

  4. How to Research La Doctrine

Introduction to Private International Law - Actors, Roles and Rules

  1. US Enforcement of Foreign Arbitration Awards

  2. US Enforcement of Foreign Judgments

Final Conclusion - Legal Research Is Cyclical and only Temporarily Finished


Statutory Research Practice Exercise #1 - Dacia's Answer
Statutory Research Practice Exercise #2 - Dacia's Answer