Government and Law-Related Websites
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U.S. Constitution Annotated | U.S. Code | Code of Federal Regulations (e-CFR) | Federal Register
Presidential & administrative agency documents & information
Federal court information & opinions
Constitution, statutes, bills & congressional information.
Other Recommended Websites
For locating federal documents, publications & information.
Acronyms, Abbreviations & Glossaries
- The White House Website
- Compilation of Presidential Documents (govinfo)
This collection includes the Daily Compilation of Presidential Documents and its predecessor, the Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents. The collection integrates material from the weekly publication dating from 1993, with Daily Compilation material as published from January 20, 2009 – forward.
- Presidential Research Resources (College & Research Libraries, vol. 79, no. 2 (2018)
This article highlights the breadth of freely available digital collections of presidential documents. The resources listed in this article provide multiple starting points for researching primary and secondary sources that include handwritten documents by the founding fathers, interview transcriptions, digitized documents, photographs, and more. The article does not contain public opinion, election, or media content sources, which are an important component of presidential research.
- Presidential Directives and Where to Find Them (Law Library of Congress)
Presidential Directives (PDs) are signed or authorized by the President and issued by the National Security Council. This guide lists the various names given to PDs by various Presidential administrations and sources for locating them.
- Presidential Signing Statements (Law Library of Congress)
A guide to researching these official pronouncements issued by the President at or near the time a bill is signed into law. Includes a helpful bibliography with links to additional resources (books, articles, other materials and web resources) concerning presidential signing statements.
- Presidential Libraries (National Archives and Records Administration)
Information on researching Presidential materials and links to Presidential libraries.
- Office of Management and Budget (OMB)
"OMB assists the President in the development and execution of his policies and programs. OMB has a hand in the development and resolution of all budget, policy, legislative, regulatory, procurement, e-gov, and management issues on behalf of the President."
Departments & Agencies
- Official Federal Government Web Sites - Executive Branch (Library of Congress)
Links to Executive branch departments and agencies. Includes some independent agencies, boards, commissions, committees and quasi-official agencies.
- A-Z Index of U.S. Government Departments and Agencies (USA.gov)
- U.S. Department of Justice
Click on the DOJ Agencies link to locate the web page of a particular bureau, division, service or office within the DOJ, e.g. FBI, Civil Rights Division, Office of Legal Counsel, Office of the Attorney General.
- United States Attorneys' Offices Contact Information
Includes links to local office web sites, such as the U.S. Attorney's Office in Minnesota.
- Federal Administrative Law Research Guide (University of Minnesota Law Library)
- Code of Federal Regulations (eCFR)
The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) is the official legal print publication containing the codification of the general and permanent rules published in the Federal Register by the departments and agencies of the Federal Government. The Electronic Code of Federal Regulations (eCFR) is a continuously updated online version of the CFR. It is not an official legal edition of the CFR.
- Federal Register (govinfo)
The Federal Register is the official daily publication for rules, proposed rules, and notices of Federal agencies and organizations, as well as executive orders and other presidential documents.
Find, review and submit comments on federal government documents that are open for comment and published in the Federal Register, e.g. proposed regulations. Search by keyword or phrase or browse by agency name. Search results are categorized under Dockets, Documents and Comments.
- Justia: Regulations - Federal Register
Browse or search full-text of the Federal Register. Filter by date. Retrospective coverage back to 2005.
- Reginfo.gov (Office of Information & Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management & Budget, Executive Office of the President)
Displays regulatory actions and information collections currently at OIRA for review. The OIRA dashboard is a component of the site that provides an up-to-date and easy-to-read graphical representation of regulatory actions currently under review. The dashboard displays these regulatory actions by agency, length of review, economic significance, and stage of rulemaking.
- Federal Administrative Decisions & Other Actions (Government Information Resources University of Virginia Library)
Links to "other administrative actions which are outside the scope of the CFR and the Federal Register." Includes administrative decisions, announcements, manuals, administrative law judge information, E-FOIA reading room material and more. Arranged by agency name.
- United States Courts (Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts)
Contains information information about the Federal Courts and judiciary. Includes court forms and information on court services, court rules, policies and court statistics, reports and records. The website's Federal Court Finder allows users to search for Federal courts and offices by court name or by city, state or zip code.
- Federal Judicial Center
The Federal Judicial Center is the research and education agency of the judicial branch. The Center's website includes reports and studies of the FJC's Research Division, information on FJC research projects, research resources on the history of the federal judiciary (see below), educational materials for judicial and court staff, and international judicial relations materials and information.
- History of the Federal Judiciary (Federal Judicial Center)
Provides a "Federal Judges Biographical Database" covering Article III Federal judges since 1789, descriptions and legislative history information of the various Federal courts, full text of "Landmark Judicial Legislation", "Topics in Judicial History", a "Historic Courthouse Photograph Exhibit" with over 600 images of federal courthouses, essays on the creation and administration of the federal judiciary, including various administrative bodies, a “Timeline for Landmark Judicial Legislation”, and a page of links to other Federal courts historical programs.
- Federal Judicial Nominations (Lillian Goldman Library, Yale Law School)
Lists of nominees prepared by the Career Development Office of Yale Law School. Includes links to sources for status of nominations information.
- govInfo US Court Opinions
This collection provides public access to opinions from selected Federal appellate, district, and bankruptcy courts. The content of this collection dates back to April 2004, though searchable electronic holdings for some courts may be incomplete for this earlier time period. U.S. Court of International Trade Opinions are also avaiable from as early as 2014.
- Supreme Court of the United States (U.S. Supreme Court Website)
- Senate Committee on the Judiciary: Supreme Court Nomination Web Page
Contains Supreme Court Nomination Hearings from 1971 to the present. Hearings are listed alphabetically by last name of the Supreme Court Justice being nominated.
- U.S. Supreme Court Justices Database
"This is a multi-user, public database containing a wealth of information on individuals nominated (whether confirmed or not) to the U.S. Supreme Court (John Jay - Amy Coney Barrett). Specifically, the Database houses 245 variables, falling into five categories: identifiers, background characteristics and personal attributes, nomination and confirmation, service on the Court, and departures from the bench." CSV, DTA, XLSX and XPT versions are available.
- Supreme Court Database (School of Law, Washington University in St. Louis)
The database contains over two hundred pieces of information about each case decided by the Court between 1791 and 2020 terms. The site also contains downloadable formats for analysis in a variety of statistical packages. Both Case Centered and Justice Centered data are provided. In the Case Centered data the unit of analysis is the case; i.e., each row of the dataset contains information about an individual dispute. These data should be used unless the votes of the individuals justices are of interest. The Justice Centered data include a row for each justice participating in each dispute.
- Supreme Court Historical Society
"SCOTUSblog is devoted to covering the U.S. Supreme Court comprehensively, without bias and according to the highest journalistic and legal ethical standards. The blog is provided as a public service."
Supreme Court Opinions, Records & Briefs
Opinions - Open Access Web Sources
- U.S. Supreme Court Opinions (FindLaw)
A searchable database of U.S. Supreme Court decisions since 1760. Supreme Court opinions are browsable by year and U.S. Reports volume number, and are searchable by party name, case title, citation, full text and docket number. FindLaw also maintains an archive of Supreme Court opinion summaries from September 2000 to the present. Summarized cases are browsable by date and searchable by docket number, case title, and full text.
- Opinions (U.S. Supreme Court Website)
The Court's opinions in this online collection include: Opinions of the Court (the latest "Slip" opinions issued by the Court during the current term); Opinions Relating to Orders (opinions written by Justices to comment on the summary disposition of cases by orders); U.S. Reports (bound volumes from 1991 to the latest available following publication). For more information about Supreme Court opinions including descriptions of the generations of opinions (Bench Opinions, Slip Opinions, Preliminary Prints and Bound Volumes) see the Court's, Information About Opinions webpage.
- Where to Obtain Supreme Court Opinions (U.S. Supreme Court Website)
This comprehensive list compiled by the Court's staff, includes both official and unofficial opinion sources in print, microform and online sources, and commercial and open access sources.
Case Documents (dockets, briefs, etc.) - Open Access Web Sources
For links to open access sources for U.S. Supreme Court case documents (dockets, briefs, oral arguments, etc..., consult the U.S. Supreme Court, Open Access Web Sources section of our Case Records & Briefs Research Guide.
Federal Courts in Minnesota
Contains legislation from the 93rd Congress (1973-74) to the present. See the Coverage Dates for Legislative Information page for more information. Profiles of members of Congress from the 93rd Congress (1973) to the present are included and members from the 71st to 92nd Congresses (1929 to 1972) who were still serving as of the 93rd Congress are also included.
govinfo (U.S. Government Printing Office)
Provides free public access to official publications from all three branches of the Federal Government. For complete information on the breadth of publications and scope of coverage, consult the "What's Available" page.
"On this site you'll find the status of legislation, the speeches of representatives on the House and Senate floors, voting records, campaign contribution summaries, and more, plus the opinions of other users through their blog entries." GovTrack also offers tracker lists you can use to tailor your own email updates (and RSS feeds) to track updates on specific bills or bills in a particular subject area, committee activities, or individual Members of Congress.
- Virtual Reference Desk (U.S. Senate)
A clearinghouse of Senate information on the Web and guides to resources in libraries and archives.
- LLSDC Legislative Source Book (Compiled by the Law Librarians' Society of Washington, D.C. - Legislative Research SIS).
Contains a number of useful resources for researching federal legislative and regulatory history.
- Center for Legislative Archives (National Archives & Records Administration)
Includes information on accessing the records congress. Contains finding aids for legislative records and links to online resources.
- A Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation (Library of Congress - American Memory Project)
U.S. Congressional documents & debates from the Continental Congress, Constitutional Convention, and the 1st-42nd Congresses: 1774-1873. The web site also includes volumes 1-17 of the U.S. Statutes at Large, which contain the laws of the 1st - 42nd Congresses (1789-1873).
- Congressional Budget Office (CBO)
The CBO's mission is to "provide Congress with objective, timely nonpartisan analyses needed for economic and budget decisions and with information and estimates required for the Congressional budget process.
- Government Accountability Office (GAO)
"The GAO is the audit, evaluation and investigative arm of Congress." Web site includes GAO reports, testimony and Comptroller General Decisions and Opinions. Note: HeinOnline's GAO Reports and Comptroller General Decisions database contains reports on audits, surveys, investigations, and evaluations of federal programs conducted by the United States Government Accountability Office (GAO). All published reports, testimonies, correspondence, and special publications are included (documents that are restricted or classified are not). GAO Comptroller General Decisions contain decisions and opinions issued by the Comptroller General in areas of federal law such as appropriations, bid protests, and federal agency rulemaking.
- Congression Research Service Reports (CRS Reports)
"CRS reports provide Congress with both anticipatory and on-demand research and analysis to support their legislative, oversight, and representational duties. All reports adhere to the core values of CRS; they are authoritative, objective and nonpartisan. Reports range in length from several pages to more than one-hundred pages and cover the full breadth of topics of interest to Congress." The collection also includes an Appropriations Status Table which provides timely information on legislative activity related to the appropriations and budget process.
This site contains a growing collection of over 18,000, freely available, CRS reports. The collection can be browsed by topic areas or searched using a custom Google search box.
- Congressional Research Service Reports (Univ. of North Texas Digital Library)
This site is not affiliated with the Congressional Research Service, but aims to provide integrated, searchable access to many of the full-text CRS reports that have been available at a variety of different websites since 1990 as well as converted print material. Reports were downloaded from a variety of web sites that host CRS reports, either currently or in the past. Many CRS reports are updated on a regular basis, and this site includes all versions of the reports that could be located. When HTML files were captured, a note was inserted at the top of the report indicating from where the files were downloaded. To prevent the need for constant maintenance of files, most external links have been removed. Metadata has been created for each report, including subject terms from the Legislative Indexing Vocabulary, supplemented with Library of Congress Subject Headings. Users have the ability to search by keyword, title, author, subject, and report number.
Other Sites for Locating Federal Documents & Publications
- University of Minnesota Government Publications Library
- govinfo (U.S. Government Printing Office)
Provides free public access to official publications from all three branches of the Federal Government. For information on the breadth of publications and scope of coverage, consult the "What's Available" page.
This database (available at libraries on the U of M TC campus with remote access for U of M TC faculty & students), aggregates a broad range of content emanating from all branches of the federal government (over 14,000 government websites). The content types available are described in the Help section of Voxgov and includes: official releases, legislation, congressional documents, regulatory documents, media advisories, speeches, Op-Eds, and social media (Twitter feeds, YouTube videos) and much more.
- National Archives and Records Administration (NARA)
- Federal Web Harvests (NARA)
"The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) conducted a web harvest (i.e. capture) of Federal Agency public websites in 2004. Starting in 2006, NARA began conducting web harvests of Congressional websites at the end of each Congress."
- USA.gov ("The U.S. Government's Official Web Portal")
USA.gov is an online guide to federal government information and services.
- Catalog of U.S. Government Publications
"The CGP is the finding tool for federal publications that includes descriptive records for historical and current publications and provides direct links to those that are available online. Users can search by authoring agency, title, subject, and general key word, or click on "Advanced Search" for more options. More than 500,000 records generated since July 1976 are contained in the CGP and it is updated daily. For publications issued prior to 1976, the printed Monthly Catalog of United States Government Publications (which existed from 1895-2004) should be consulted." The GCP is continually adding more historical publications and will eventually include all the holdings of the Monthly Catalog.
- MetaLib (U.S. GPO)
A service of the Catalog of U.S. Government Publications, MetaLib is a federated search engine that searches multiple U.S. Federal government databases, retrieving reports, articles, and citations while providing direct links to selected resources available online. Refine your search results by exploring the various topics, date ranges, and author names.
- CyberCemetery (U.S. GPO and Univ. of North Texas Libraries)
This web site provides access to the web sites and electronic publications of defunct U.S. government agencies and commissions.
Acronyms, Abbreviations & Glossaries
- GovSpeak: A Guide to Government Acronyms & Abbreviations (University of California, San Diego, Library)
"This guide lists acronyms and abbreviations commonly used by the United States federal government. Each acronym is defined and links to the home page (or best alternative) of the identified department, agency, office, program or publication."
- DOD Terminology Program
Includes Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms.
- U.S. Senate Glossary
Provides brief definitions of terms related to Congress and the legislative process.