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Free/Low-Cost Legal Research on the Internet: Federal Legal Materials

Federal Statutes Online

The U.S. Constitution is available at:

U.S. Statutes are available at:

  • Office of the Law Revision Counsel The Office of Law Revision Counsel is the official preparer of the U.S. Code.
  • A collection of state and federal legal materials.
  • Legal Information Institute An online collection of state, federal, and international legal materials sponsored by Cornell University Law School.
  • FDSys from the United States Government Printing Office.  The United States Code and Private and Public Laws are located in the right column under "Browse."  

Executive Branch Resources

White Official website for the U.S. White House.

The National Archives and Records Administration  The U.S. government's official "record keeper." This site provides access to historical records of the United States including military records, the U.S. Constitution, historical photos, and genealogy records.

A-Z Index of U.S. Government Departments and Agencies

Supreme Court Decisions Online

Appellate and District Court Decisions

Legislative History

You may need to research the background of a statute. There are several free options for federal legislative history research. Keep in mind that the free options listed below are limited in coverage and scope and you will likely need to use a subscription database such as HeinOnline or ProQuest Congressional or visit a local law or government documents library. For additional assistance with federal legislative history research, consult the library's guide "Federal Legislative History."

U.S. Archives Memory Project: A Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation U.S. Congressional hearings, debates, and records from 1774-1885. contains legislative history for most bills from the 93rd Congress forward. Links to committee reports, debates, and the Congressional Record are available for select bills.

The Law Librarian Association of Washington D.C. provides links to compiled legislative histories available online. The links are organized by the law's popular name and Public Law Number. A list of available commercial compilations and where to locate them is also available.

Pending Legislation Legislative information from the Library of Congress 

U.S. Senate Current U.S. Senate proceedings

U.S. House of Representatives Current U.S. House of Representative proceedings. Track current U.S. House and Senate bills and resolutions as well as the actions of specific Congress members.

Related LibGuides

Free Sources for Foreign and International Resources

United Nations  Many UN documents can be accessed online through the UN's website.

Europa (English Version, other languages available) The European Union's information portal. This site contains primary and secondary legal sources related to the European Union, as well as general information and news.

Institute for Transnational Law: Foreign Law Translations Selected translations of primary legal materials.


Google Scholar

Researchers can now search for case citations from Google Scholar. Some cases may be available in full text. Citing case information may also be available.

Google Scholar Search
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