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Indian & Tribal Law

Resources for researching federal Indian law and Native American tribal law.

Cohen's Handbook of Federal Indian Law

Previous editions

  • Felix S. Cohen's Handbook of Federal Indian Law (1982 reprint of classic 1942 edition). Reference Area KF8205.C6 1942a
  • 1942 edition available on HeinOnline (UW Restricted)
  • 1940 temporary edition (typescript) on HeinOnline (UW Restricted)
  • 1945 edition available on Google Books and on University of Oklahoma site.

Restatement Project

ALI logoThe American Law Institute has developed  The Restatement of the Law, The Law of American Indians.

This Restatement will cement the foundational principles of American Indian law. Topics include federal/tribal relations, state/tribal relations, tribal jurisdiction and authority, and Indian Country business law.

The Restatement covers the following in its six chapters: Chapter 1 Federal–Tribal Relations; Chapter 2 Tribal Authority; Chapter 3 State–Tribal Relations; Chapter 4 Tribal Economic Development; Chapter 5 Indian Country Criminal Jurisdiction; and Chapter 6 Natural Resources.

The official text is available:

Other Books

Journal Articles

HeinOnline's American Indian Law Collection (UW restricted) includes hundreds of law journal articles, curated by the editors to be about Indian law.

For more law journal articles, seach full-text databases in Lexis Advance, Westlaw, Bloomberg Law, or HeinOnline. Note that HeinOnline has much greater historical coverage. Bloomberg Law's coverage is briefer than Westlaw's or Lexis's.

For articles from history, sociology, economics, anthropology, or any other discipline that touches on Indian law, use UW Libraries Articles & Research Databases. To find relevant databases, start with UW Libraries Research Guides.

Specialized Journals

Any law review can have an article about Indian or tribal law. The following journals specialize in the area.

Historic Books & Reports

HeinOnline logo

HeinOnline's Indigenous Peoples of the Americas: History, Culture & Law (UW restricted) (formerly American Indian Law Collection) includes books and reports as diverse as these:

Continuing Legal Education Materials

The University of Washington School of Law hosts the annual Western Regional Indian Law Symposium. The printed CLE materials are found at KF8224.C6W47 at Classified Stacks & Reference Area Microfiche. Indexes to the materials cover statutes, cases, tribes, and subjects discussed.

Ralph W. Johnson Bibliography

University of Washington Law School professor Ralph Johnson was a noted Indian law scholar and advocate. He founded the UW's Native American Law Center. A bibliography of his publications is here. A profile by David W. Getches is at 72 Wash. L. Rev. 995 (1997), available on HeinOnline (UW Restricted).