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Legal Research

Secondary Sources

Secondary legal sources are designed to comment on and explain the law found in primary sources -- cases and legislation. This commentary will help you apply cases and legislation effectively to the issues you are dealing with. 

Searching for secondary sources is the first step in legal researchThese sources are useful for putting the law into context, and often will lead you to relevant legislation and cases.


Secondary sources can include:

  • Books, Textbooks, treatises, casebooks, loose-leaf services

  • Articles (Journals and periodicals)

  • Legal encyclopedias and dictionaries

  • Other Sources

    • Government Documents

    • Websites

    • Reports

    • Legal Education materials and seminar papers

    • Law Wikis and Blogs

    • News Sources/ Newspapers

    • Listservs​

    • Law Firm and Professional Associations Newsletters