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Home Page > Courts > Finding the Law > Doing Legal Research > Doing Legal Research with Books

Using a Law Library


When you go to a law library, ask where the reference desk is. Once you get
there, ask if they have a map to tell you where the different books are kept. You should also ask if they have guides or pathfinders to help you find information on different topics.

Another advantage of going to a law library is that libraries have books. (Some law libraries and most public libraries also have access to the Internet.) Books usually have indexes. Indexes list the subjects the book covers in alphabetical order. Always check the index first to find out where to start looking to find law.

Yet another advantage of going to a law library is that libraries have secondary sources. Secondary sources, mentioned above, are good places to start finding out about a topic that is new to you. Secondary sources are also good places to find good forms.

A disadvantage of using books is that the law may change but the book may not. When you are doing legal research with books, check the back of the book to see if there is an update to tell about new law or changes in the law.


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