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Zimmerman's Research Guide


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Uniform Laws

The National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws publishes an important series of model Acts, referred to as "Uniform Laws," many of which have been adopted by all, most or many states. The Web address for the NCCUSL is www.uniformlaws.org/. Their telephone number is 312-450-6600. They can answer most questions.

All the current drafts and final Uniform Laws are posted by the NCCUSL and the University of Pennsylvania. They are also available as an add-on to a HeinOnline subscription.

Annotated editions of the Uniform Laws are published in Uniform Laws Annotated (ULA). ULA tells you which states adopted each Uniform Law and how each state adjusted each individual section. You also get summaries of cases interpreting each section. The ULA is published by West and is available in most larger U.S. law libraries. An online version is searchable on Westlaw (ULA).

You can also look up which states have adopted a particular Uniform Law using one of the LII's Uniform Code locators.

To see the text of a state's version of a Uniform Law, look in the state's codified statutes.

The Legal Information Institute posts a Uniform Business and Financial Laws Locator and a Uniform Matrimonial, Family and Health Laws Locater. These Locators link to online state statutes for the related Uniform Laws.

State legislation: The NCCUSL posts a database of recent legislation that affects Uniform Laws. You can also check the Registers, Session Laws and Bill Status web sites for individual states (see State Bills and State Statutes).

Prefatory Notes: Prefatory Notes are published with the the related Uniform Law in Uniform Laws Annotated, after the names of Committee members and before the text of the Law. Prefatory Notes are included at the beginning of the Drafts and Final Acts posted the by Penn Law School library.

PEB Commentaries: Permanent Editorial Board Commentaries are published in Uniform Laws Annotated.

Meeting Handbooks and Transcripts: The Handbooks from each Annual Conference meeting and transcripts of the proceedings of each meeting are available in the NCCUSL add-on to the subscription-based HeinOnline.

Withdrawn Acts: Sometimes the Commissioners give up on an act and withdraw it. You can get copies from superseded volumes of Martindale-Hubbell (unannotated; up to 2006) and Uniform Laws Annotated (annotated). You can get copies of either from the library of the New York County Lawyers Association (212-267-664), the State of Oregon Law Library, etc. I know that the law libraries at George Washington University and the University of Pennsylvania keep superseded volumes of Uniform Laws Annotated. Or you could call the Uniform Law Commission (312-450-6600) and ask if they would send you a copy.

The Uniform Judicial Notice of Foreign Law Act is available at 23 ALR2d 1437, section 2.

For further discussion of Uniform Laws, see Researching Uniform Law by the Kissam Memoral Library at Fordham Law School and/or Fundamentals of Legal Research (West).


See Also
Model Acts
Model Laws
State Statutes and Codes
Uniform Commercial Code

For comments, questions and suggestions, email the author
Copyright 2014 Andrew Zimmerman