Locating the Law
The law librarians at the Southern California Association of Law Libraries have created a wonderful, and concise, guide to legal research that includes California, Federal, and International legal materials. All of these documents are in PDF format. You will need Adobe Reader to view them.
These are selected chapters from this e-book. If you would like to view the entire book you can access it via the SCALL website.
Chapter 2 - How to read a legal citation
This chapter will describe citations to cases, statutes or codes, and law reviews and treatises. A short discussion of legal citation manuals and a list of common abbreviations are also included in this chapter.
Chapter 3 - Basic legal research techniques
This chapter is intended to serve as a guide for public librarians assisting users who have legal reference questions.
Chapter 5 - California Law
The state of California has done a great job of making its primary sources of law widely available via the Internet. In addition, legal publishers publish a multitude of secondary sources1 in print and in online databases. This abundance of information has made researching California law easy for some and overwhelming for others. For those without a legal background (and most with one), it is always advisable to start with a secondary source.
Chapter 7 - Federal Law
This chapter provides brief descriptions of the legislative process and the federal judiciary and focuses on the primary sources of federal law (i.e., cases, statutes, and regulations). Included are references to both print and Internet sources.
Heafey Law Library Research Team