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Free/Low-Cost Legal Research on the Internet: Getting Started

Research Guides

This guide is a starting point for finding free and low-cost legal information. It is designed for use by students, law faculty, lawyers, and the general public. This guide is not an exhaustive list of free and low-cost legal information. You may want to browse other guides on the same topic to find more information. Below is a list of additional Internet resources related to low-cost legal research.

Free and Low Cost Legal Research, Georgetown Law Library

Internet Legal Resources-Free Legal Resources, CALI Lesson

The Law Student Guide to Free and Low Cost Legal Research on the Web

Free and Low Cost Resources for Legal Research, Pace Law Library

Legal Research on the Web, Duke Law Library

Books about Free and Low-Cost Legal Research

Comments and Suggestions

Low-Cost Databases

 (free to OK Bar members) offers flexible subscription plans for access to a variety of primary legal sources. Fastcase is accessible on-campus from the law library's Database page and off-campus by clicking on the database name and entering your OCU network username and password. 

provides access to state and federal primary legal resources and is available through certain state bar association memberships. OCU students may set up a free CaseMaker account while they are in law school.

LexisWeb (though still in Beta) offers free access to federal case law and additional materials on a pay-by-use basis. It is designed as an alternative to a full Lexis subscription for small firms and solo practitioners.


Evaluating Online Legal Resources

The Internet can be a wonderful tool for legal research; however, users should carefully scrutinize online sources. To determine whether information found online is valid, consider the following:

Source: Who is responsible for the content on the page? Is it a government agency, special interest group, corporation, academic institution, media outlet, or individual?  Consider their expertise and what, if any, interest they have in publishing the content.

Accuracy: Is the information accurate? Are citations or copies of the primary legal authority (such as case law or statutes) available?

Timeliness: When was the content updated?

Local Law Libraries

The Oklahoma County Law Library is located on the second floor of the Oklahoma County Courthouse. Basic Westlaw access is available for free.
321 Park Ave, RM 247
Oklahoma City, OK 73102
Phone: 405-713-1353 

University of Oklahoma Donald E. Pray Library Law Library. Access after 6 PM is restricted to students and faculty. Free public access to Westlaw is available in the library.

University of Tulsa College of Law Mabee Legal Information Center

University of Central Oklahoma Chambers Library. Free public access to Westlaw is available in the library.

Oklahoma Department of Libraries . No public access to Westlaw.

Metropolitan Library System (Public library-minimal legal materials)


Google Search Box

The Google search box allows you to search the Internet from within the Libguide.

Google Web Search

Google Scholar Search Box

Google Scholar provides a simple way to broadly search for scholarly literature. From one place, you can search across many disciplines and sources: articles, theses, books, abstracts and court opinions, from academic publishers, professional societies, online repositories, universities and other web sites. Google Scholar helps you find relevant work across the world of scholarly research.

Google Scholar Search


Catalog Search Widget