Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
UMKC University Libraries

Thinking About Legal Research Problems

Created by Paul D. Callister from earlier version at

For Primary Materials, Determine the Kind of Law, Jurisdiction & Arrangement

Arrangement of the Law

Primary law is always organized in multiple ways--chronologically, by topic and by citation.

Institution Kind of Law How the Law is Published (Arrangements)?
Chronologically Topically By Citation
Capitol Legislature Statutory Law

Session Laws (video)

Statutory Codes (video)

Shepard's/KeyCite/Annotated Codes (video)

Court House Courts Case Law Case Reports

Case Digests (Summaries of Primary Authority) (video)

Shepard's/KeyCite/ALR (video)
White house Agencies & Executive Branch Administrative Law Administrative Registers or Regulations Administrative Codes Shepard's/KeyCite (video - same as above)

Table based upon Christopher G. Wren and Jill Robinson Wren, The Teaching of Legal Research, 80 Law Libr. J. 7, 35 (Matrix A) (1988).  See also Christopher G. Wren and Jill Robinson Wren, The Legal Research Manual 17 (fig. K) (2d ed. 1986).

chat loading...