Law Library Reading Room

Find databases and eResources that provide legal and legislative information for the U.S. and around the globe.  Access these items alphabetically by title or by topic.  Note: The Library subscribes to a number of commercial databases related to legal research which are available to patrons while on-site in a Library of Congress Reading Room only.  Check the availability for each item for more information.

View list alphabetically

Constitutions and Treaty Information

Name of Database/Web Site Description Availability
Oxford Constitutions of the World (external link) Contains the full-text of constitutions from over 187 countries, including English translations and introductory and comparative notes. Accessible from a Reading Room
Human Rights Library (external link) Digital copies of core human rights documents, including treaties and other primary international human rights instruments. Internet
Indian Affairs: Laws and Treaties (external link) Digital copies of documents dealing with the legal status and laws, government relations, and treaties of North American Indians. Internet
LIS Access treaty documents and Senate Executive Reports via the Legislative Information System. Congress only
Congress.gov Current beta version contains full-text of legislation from the 103rd Congress (1993) to the present and member profiles from the 93rd Congress (1973) to the present. Internet
THOMAS Current and historical legislative information for Congress, including: bills, laws, treaties, the Congressional Record, roll call votes, and committee reports. Internet
Treaties and Agreements Library from HeinOnline (external link) Includes both official and unofficial primary treaty resources in addition to helpful guides. Accessible from a Reading Room
Treaties and International Agreements (external link) TIARA contains accurate versions of over 15,000 treaties and international agreements. Accessible from a Reading Room (Select: Connect via IP Address)

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Finding Legal Periodicals

Most of the databases listed below are journal indexes that may provide the full-text of a journal article. Indexes list bibliographic information about the article such as: article title, author, journal name, volume, issue, page number, date and subject headings or descriptors.

If the full-text of an article does not appear in your results, check to see if there is a  Find It! button next to the bibliographic information. If so, use this reference tool to help locate a copy of the article, either in print (through the Online Catalog or electronically (by pointing you to an alternative online full-text database).

Name of Database/Web Site Description Availability
E-Journals in Law, Politics & Government Browse an alphabetical subject list of electronic journals in Law, Politics and Government. Accessible from a Reading Room
Find It! Article Finder Library of Congress tool to help you locate the full-text of an article by providing citation information. Internet
HeinOnline (external link) Offers a full-text searchable database of law reviews and journals. Accessible from a Reading Room
Index to Foreign Legal Periodicals (via HeinOnline) (external link) A multilingual subject index to legal articles and book reviews published in over 550 sources worldwide. Accessible from a Reading Room
Index to Legal Periodicals & Books Full Text (1981-present) Covers over 1,000 legal journals, yearbooks, law reviews, and more from the U.S., Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand. Accessible from a Reading Room
Index to Legal Periodicals Retrospective (1908-1981) Index to over 750 legal periodicals, including law reviews, bar association journals, and government publications. Accessible from a Reading Room
LegalTrac (external link) Index to more than 2,400 titles including major law reviews, legal newspapers, bar association journals and international legal journals. Accessible from a Reading Room

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Foreign, Comparative, and International Law

Name of Database/Web Site Description Availability
Asian Law Online (external link) Collection of English language materials on Asian laws; includes books, chapters in books, journal articles and theses. Internet
ASIL Electronic Resource Guide (external link) Electronic resource guide that sets out basic international law search strategies and lists resources on various topics. Internet
Audiovisual Library of International Law (external link) Contains documents, tapes - both audio and video - and other materials on subjects of international law. Internet
Australasian Legal Information Institute Databases (external link) AustLII contains primary legal and legislative materials for Australia and New Zealand. Internet
British and Irish Legal Information Institute Databases (external link) BAILII contains primary legal and legislative materials for England and Wales, Ireland, Northern Ireland, Scotland, United Kingdom, and the European Union. Internet
Canadian Legal Information Institute Databases (external link) CanLII contains primary legal and legislative materials for Canada. Internet
Oxford Constitutions of the World (external link) Contains the full-text of constitutions from over 187 countries, including English translations and introductory and comparative notes. Accessible from a Reading Room
Foreign Law Guide (external link) Provides an overview of individual legal systems with references to current sources of codes and basic legislation for each jurisdiction. Accessible from the Law Library Reading Room only
Foreign Relations of the United States (FRUS) (external link) U.S. Department of State site presenting the official documentary historical record of major United States foreign policy decisions and significant diplomatic activity, primarily covering 1945 to 1980. Internet
Global Legal Information Catalog (GLIC) Interfaces with the Library of Congress catalog to help users find publications which reprint in English the laws and regulations of foreign and international jurisdictions on a particular legal topic.  Internet
Guide to Law Online Vast network of links to content-based Web sites of primary and secondary legal information from foreign jurisdictions and all U.S. federal, state and territorial government entities. Internet
Human Rights Library (external link) Digital copies of core human rights documents, including several hundred human rights treaties and other primary international human rights instruments. Internet
Index to Foreign Legal Periodicals (via HeinOnline) (external link) A multilingual subject index to legal articles and book reviews published in over 550 sources worldwide. Accessible from a Reading Room
Institute for Transnational Law Foreign Law Translations (external link) English translations of French, German, Austrian, and Israeli legal materials in the fields of constitutional, administrative, contract and tort law. Internet
Law nB – Korean Law Database (external link) Provides access to cases, statutes and other legal references for Korea. Accessible from the Law Library Reading Room only
Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law (external link) Comprehensive work covering the central and essential topics in international law since the Peace of Westphalia in 1648.  Accessible from a Reading Room
PARLIT (external link) A database of bibliographic references on the role, structure and working methods of national parliaments, and on electoral systems. Internet
RDB de Rechtsdatenbank (external link) Provides access to a large number of Austrian legal journals, collections of cases, and other resources related to the laws of Austria. Accessible from the Law Library Reading Room only
World Legal Information Institute (WorldLII) (external link) Provides access to worldwide law from countries in six continents. Internet

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General

Name of Database/Web Site Description Availability
LexisNexis Library Express (external link) Comprehensive coverage of US federal and state case law, statutes and regulations.  Includes secondary source materials such as law reviews, newspapers, treatises and patent information. Accessible from a Reading Room

Historical Legal Documents

Name of Database/Web Site Description Availability
American State Papers, 1789-1838 (Readex) (external link) Contains the legislative and executive documents of Congress for the period 1789 to 1838. Accessible from a Reading Room
Avalon Project (external link)
Digital primary source documents selected by the Yale Law School relevant to the fields of Law, History, Economics, Politics, Diplomacy and Government. Internet
Foreign Relations of the United States (FRUS) (external link) U.S. Department of State site presenting the official documentary historical record of major United States foreign policy decisions and significant diplomatic activity, primarily covering 1945 to 1980. Internet
Historical Publications of the United States Commission on Civil Rights (external link) Digital publications from the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. Internet
ProQuest Congressional (external link) Provides access to U.S. legislative information, including hearings, reports, prints, documents, bills, laws, regulations, and CIS Legislative Histories (1969-present).  Accessible from a Reading Room
ProQuest Legislative Insight (external link) Provides various browsing and searching options for selected compiled legislative histories, for the 24th Congress (1835-1837) through the 112th Congress (2011-2013). Accessible from a Reading Room
LLMC Digital (external link) Searchable databases of earlier primary U.S. federal and state government documents as well as various foreign jurisdictions and international organizations. Accessible from a Reading Room
London Gazette Archive (external link)
An official newspaper of record in the United Kingdom for publishing legal notices, including insolvency (bankruptcy) notices. Internet
Making of Modern Law: Legal Treatises 1800 – 1926 (external link) Searchable collection of Anglo-American legal treatises containing works from casebooks, local practice manuals, form books, works for lay readers, pamphlets, letters, speeches and more. Accessible from a Reading Room
OYEZ (external link) A multimedia database about the United States Supreme Court which includes audio files of oral arguments, abstracts of key constitutional cases, and information on Supreme Court justices. Internet
Supreme Court Library from HeinOnline (external link) Includes complete coverage of published cases in official sources from 1754 to the last full calendar year for the United States Supreme Court. Accessible from a Reading Room
U.S. Congressional Serial Set (Readex) (external link) Contains all the reports, documents, and journals of the United States Senate and House of Representatives, from the 15th Congress (1817) through the 97th Congress (1982). Accessible from a Reading Room
U.S. Statutes at Large from HeinOnline (external link) A digital copy of the entire U.S. Statutes at Large, beginning with volume 1. Accessible from a Reading Room
United States Supreme Court Records and Briefs, 1832 - 1978 (Gale) (external link) A collection of Supreme Court documents covering more than 150,000 distinct cases. Accessible from a Reading Room

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Legislative and Statutory Resources

Name of Database/Web Site Description Availability
American State Papers, 1789-1838 (Readex) (external link) Contains the legislative and executive documents of Congress during the period 1789 to 1838. Accessible from a Reading Room
Congressional Record (FDsys) (external link) Contains the official record of the proceedings and debates of the United States Congress from Volume 140 (1994) to the present. Internet
CQ.com (external link) Congressional Quarterly, including Congressional Weekly, provides in-depth legislative news and analysis of the United States Congress. Accessible from a Reading Room
Guide to Law Online Vast network of links to content-based Web sites of primary and secondary legal information from foreign jurisdictions and all U.S. federal, state and territorial government entities. Internet
Precedents of the U.S. House of Representatives (FDsys) (external link) Includes Deschler’s, Cannon’s, and Hinds’ Precedents; contains rulings made by the chair of the House of Representatives. Internet
ProQuest Congressional (external link) Provides access to U.S. legislative information, including hearings, reports, prints, documents, bills, laws, regulations, and CIS Legislative Histories (1969-present).  Accessible from a Reading Room
ProQuest Legislative Insight (external link) Provides various browsing and searching options for selected compiled legislative histories, for the 24th Congress (1835-1837) through the 112th Congress (2011-2013). Accessible from a Reading Room
NCSL State Legislative Websites Directory (external link) Searchable database providing links to Web sites of State Legislatures, Legislators and political developments. Internet
Congress.gov Contains full-text of legislation from the 103rd Congress (1993) to the present and member profiles from the 93rd Congress (1973) to the present. Internet
THOMAS Current and historical legislative information for Congress, including: bills, laws, treaties, the Congressional Record, roll call votes, and committee reports. Internet
U.S. Congressional Serial Set (Readex) (external link) Contains all the reports, documents, and journals of the United States Senate and House of Representatives, from the 15th Congress (1817) through the 97th Congress (1982). Accessible from a Reading Room
U.S. Statutes at Large from HeinOnline (external link) A digital copy of the entire U.S. Statutes at Large, beginning with volume 1. Accessible from a Reading Room

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Reference

Name of Database/Web Site Description Availability
Oxford Reference Online: Law (external link) Includes full-text access to the following titles: The Oxford Companion to American Law, A Dictionary of Law, and The Oxford Guide to United States Supreme Court Decisions. Accessible from a Reading Room
Credo Reference: Law (external link) Includes the full-text of reference sources, including encyclopedias, dictionaries, thesauri and books of quotations. Accessible from a Reading Room

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Regulatory Information

Name of Database/Web Site Description Availability
The Federal Register Collection/Code of Federal Regulations (via HeinOnline) (external link) Provides search and browse options to the PDF of the Federal Register and Federal Register Index back to 1936; the Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.) back to 1938; and details on C.F.R. sections affected back to 1949. Accessible from a Reading Room
CyberRegs (external link) Provides the full-text of the US Code, Federal Register, Code of Federal Regulations, state registers, state statutes and forms, and state environmental, safety, health and transportation regulations. Accessible from a Reading Room
Regulations.gov (external link) Allows for browsing and searching of proposed and final federal regulations, submitted comments regarding proposed regulations, supporting agency documentation, and reports related to regulations. Internet
Guide to Law Online Vast network of links to content-based Web sites of primary and secondary legal information from foreign jurisdictions and all U.S. federal, state and territorial government entities. Internet

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Subjects

Name of Database/Web Site Description Availability
CCH IntelliConnect (external link)
Comprehensive full-text searchable database of primary and secondary legal sources regarding federal, state, and international taxation; accounting and audit; financial and estate planning; health care compliance and reimbursement; human resources; and pension and employee benefits. Accessible from the Law Library Reading Room only
NATLEX (external link) Contains over 55,000 records covering over 170 countries and territories on national labour, social security and related human rights legislation. Internet

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Last Updated: 10/07/2014