Introduction to Legal Research & Government Policy Resources

Prepared by Cheryl Nyberg for Health Policy Development (H.Serv. 552)
Updated Nov. 10, 2003.

Note: To access the commercial databases to which the UW Libraries subscribe (including LexisNexis Academic) you must be using a computer at one of the UW Libraries or one that accesses the Internet via a UW connection.

Primary Legal Materials

Statutes (laws in force)

Bills (laws being considered for enactment)

Cases (written decisions of appellate courts)

  • United States (federal)
    • LexisNexis Academic > Legal Research > Get a Case (when you have a citation or know the names of the parties)
    • LexisNexis Academic > Legal Research > Federal Case Law
    • LexisOne
    • Cornell University's Legal Information Institute
    • Print
      • U.S. Reports (U.S.)
      • Supreme Court Reporter (S.Ct.)
      • Federal Reporter (F., F.2d, F.3d) (decisions of the courts of appeals)
      • Federal Supplement (F.Supp.) (selected decisions of the district courts)
  • Washington State
    • LexisNexis Academic > Legal Research > State Case Law > Washington
    • LegalWA
    • Findlaw
    • Print
      • Washington Reports (Wash., Wash.2d) (decisions of the Washington Supreme Court)
      • Washington Appellate Reports (Wash.App.) (decisions of the Washington Courts of Appeal)
      • Pacific Reporter (P., P.2d, P.3d) (decisions of the Washington Supreme Court and Courts of Appeal, along with appellate court decisions from neighboring states)
  • Foreign countries



Secondary Sources

Law review articles

News stories and reports

Public policy articles


Government Policy Resources

United States (federal)

Washington State

Foreign countries


Online Legal Dictionaries

Need help with legal terminology? Consult one of these online legal dictionaries or see the Gallagher guide on Legal Dictionaries:


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