Thurgood Marshall Law Library Guide to Legal Research

Updated in 2022 by the Thurgood Marshall Law Library Instructional Group. All rights reserved. For permission to reprint any part of this work, contact the administration of the Thurgood Marshall Law Library.

CHAPTER 1 (TMLL Guide Chapter 1)

INTRODUCTION TO LEGAL AUTHORITIES AND LEGAL RESEARCH

  1. Introduction
  2. How Does Legal Research Differ from Research in Other Contexts?
  3. Types of Legal Authorities
  4. Relationship Between Statutory Law and Case Law
  5. The Universe of Choices for Legal Research
  6. The Legal Research Process
  7. Understanding Citations to Basic Primary Authorities

CHAPTER 2 (TMLL Guide Chapter 2)

ELECTRONIC RESEARCH TECHNIQUES

  1. Electronic Research Basics
  2. Natural Language Searching
  3. Boolean Searching
  4. Field and Segment Searching
  5. Bloomberg Law, Lexis, and Westlaw
  6. Composing Searches
  7. Low-Cost Subscription Databases for Legal Research
  8. Internet Research

CHAPTER 3 (TMLL Guide Chapter 3)

BACKGROUND RESEARCH USING SECONDARY SOURCES

  1. Secondary Sources: Background
  2. Using Legal Periodicals
  3. Using Legal Encyclopedias
  4. Using Treatises, Hornbooks, and Nutshells
  5. Using Restatements
  6. Using American Law Reports
  7. Tips for Using Secondary Sources
  8. Highlights of Bluebook Form for Secondary Sources

CHAPTER 4 (TMLL Guide Chapter 4)

STATUTORY AND CONSTITUTIONAL LAW RESEARCH

  1. Statutory and Constitutional Law: Background
  2. Terminology Used in Statutory and Constitutional Research
  3. Sources for Statutory and Constitutional Research
  4. Highlights of Bluebook Form for Statutes and Constitutions

CHAPTER 5 (TMLL Guide Chapter 5)

RESEARCHING LEGISLATIVE HISTORY

  1. Getting Started
  2. Researching Federal Legislative History
  3. Researching Maryland Legislative History

CHAPTER 6 (TMLL Guide Chapter 6)

ADMINISTRATIVE LAW RESEARCH

  1. Introduction
  2. Background Research on Agencies
  3. Sources of Administrative Law
  4. Executive Orders and Other Presidential Documents
  5. Strategies for Researching Administrative Materials

CHAPTER 7 (TMLL Guide Chapter 7)

CASE LAW RESEARCH

  1. Case Law: Background
  2. Court Hierarchies and the Appellate Process
  3. Print Sources for Case Law Research
  4. Online Sources for Case Law Research
  5. Citators: Function and Formats
  6. Citation Format for Cases
  7. Highlights of Bluebook Form for Cases

CHAPTER 8 (TMLL Guide Chapter 8)

RESEARCHING A STATE LAW PROBLEM

  1. State Governments
  2. State Constitutions
  3. State Legislation
  4. State Courts
  5. State Court Rules
  6. State Regulations
  7. Strategies for Researching a State Law Problem
  8. Highlights of Bluebook Form for State Law Sources
  9. Checklist: Researching a State Law Problem

CHAPTER 9 (TMLL Guide Chapter 9)

RESEARCHING A MARYLAND LAW PROBLEM

  1. Maryland Government
  2. Maryland Constitution
  3. Maryland Legislation
  4. Maryland Courts
  5. Maryland Court Rules
  6. Maryland Administrative Materials
  7. Maryland Local Law
  8. Baltimore City Materials
  9. Maryland Practice Materials

CHAPTER 10 (TMLL Guide Chapter 10)

RETROSPECTIVE MARYLAND STATUTE SEARCHING

  1. Explanation
  2. Examples

CHAPTER 11 (TMLL Guide Chapter 11)

RESEARCHING A FEDERAL LAW PROBLEM

  1. Federal Government
  2. U.S. Constitution
  3. Federal Legislation
  4. Federal Courts
  5. Federal Court Rules
  6. Federal Regulations and Other Administrative Materials
  7. Strategies for Researching a Federal Law Problem
  8. Federal Practice Materials
  9. Highlights of Bluebook Form for Federal Authorities
  10. Checklist: Researching a Federal Law Problem

CHAPTER 12 (TMLL Guide Chapter 12)

FOREIGN AND INTERNATIONAL LAW RESEARCH

  1. Terminology Used in Researching International Law
  2. Selected Sources for Researching United States Treaties
  3. Locating Implementing Laws, Regulations, and Judicial Interpretations of United States Treaties
  4. Selected Sources for Researching World Treaties
  5. Strategies for Researching International Law
  6. Basic Foreign Law Research
  7. Selected Sources for Researching European Union Law
  8. Selected Sources for Researching United Nations Materials

CHAPTER 13 (TMLL Guide Chapter 13)

LOOSELEAF SERVICES AND OTHER PRACTICE MATERIALS

  1. Looseleaf Services
  2. Form Books
  3. General Litigation Resources
  4. Court Filings: Pleadings, Briefs, and Motions
  5. Jury Instructions
  6. Jury Verdicts and Settlements
  7. Locating Expert Witnesses