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Researching Statutes

The challenge for statutory research is establishing context of the search results.  It is helpful to understand the organization of the code, and to realize that statutes dealing with a particular topic will be appear near each other, within the same title.  

Researchers should develop a list of keywords and understand the general area of law that may implicated by the statutory research question.  After locating results, researchers should browse the statutory language, advancing to the nearby sections using the table of contents, and reading for a definitions section.  

Researchers should use an annotated code, and use the provided annotations to locate relevant case law, regulations, and secondary authority. Researchers should note the code's date of publication and check for any pending changes to the code section.

For historical research, researchers should review the Source or Credit's notes at the end of each code section to determine when that section was enacted and / or amended.  Researchers will need to consult legislative history documents to determine the meaning of the statute or statutory language.