Navigating FindLaw

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FAQs

Read our Primer for general information on doing research online. The Primer includes discussion on approaches to online research, finding specific kinds of legal materials, such as codes, case law, law journals, and other secondary materials, people, agencies, organizations and more.

How do I find case law online?

Go to the Cases and Codes section. Select the jurisdiction that you are looking for. There are links to federal jurisdictions directly from the Cases and Codes top level page. We also have a searchable database of Supreme Court Opinions since 1893. For state case law, follow the link to the State Resource directory, and then select the state you are interested in. If we've found the case law online, we've linked it at our site.

If you can't find the case you are looking for in one of the databases that is linked to FindLaw, try doing a key word search using the LawCrawler. Many times people will put an individual case online if they feel it is especially important.

How do I find code sections online?

Go to the Cases and Codes section. We have links to the U.S. Code, the U.S. Constitution, the Code of Federal Regulation and more. If you are looking for state codes, go to the State Resource directory and then select the state you are interested in. If we've found the code online, we've linked it at our site.

If you can't find the code you are looking for in one of the databases that is linked to FindLaw, try doing a key word search using the LawCrawler. Many times people will put an individual code section online if they feel it is especially important.

What if I can't find what I'm looking for using the indexes?

Unfortunately not everything is available online yet. So what you are looking for may not be online. It's a good idea to round out your research with a search tool such as the LawCrawler or Google. The LawCrawler focuses on legal information, whereas AltaVista is an all-purpose search engine.

How do I cite something found on FindLaw?

While no definitive format currently exists on how to cite Internet electronic resources, we suggest you consult the following style guides when citing FindLaw as a source.

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