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How a Bill Becomes a Law and Various Other Sources

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Federal Regulations

Regulations (sometimes called “rules”) are written by an executive agency or independent agency, authorized by Congress or a presidential executive order, to administer a law or a government program.

While regulations are not enforced by Congress, they have the force and effect of law.

In many cases, in order to trace the final results of a legislative history, you may want to see what regulations were implemented by the administrative agency that is responsible for interpreting the intent of the original law and writing a detailed procedure to carry out the law.

See also: Regulations

Title & Dates of Coverage Location Frequency & Indexing Description
Federal Register
Middleton Reference
(Legal Section)
AE 2.106:

FDsys, 1994-
Issued daily except for weekends and federal holidays.

[Current year, prior years in Government Documents]
Includes proposed rules, final rules, and notices of executive and independent agencies as well as presidential executive orders and proclamations.

Generally arranged by agency, and within agency into rules, proposed rules, and notices.

Includes a section called “Readers Aids” which is a list of CFR sections affected by rulemaking during the current month.

The general and permanent regulations are cumulated and codified (i.e., grouped by subject) in the Code of Federal Regulations.
Code of Federal Regulations
Middleton Reference
(Legal Section)
AE 2.106/3-2:


Has a separately published subject index arranged by broad subject and agency.

[Current year, prior years in Government Documents]
Annual revised codification of rules, which were first published in Federal Register.

Contains all the Federal administration rules, regulations and guidelines that are currently in force.

Organized by 50 subject groupings known as “titles.”
LSA-List of CFR Sections Affected
Middleton Reference
(Legal Section)
AE 2.106/2:


Issued every six years with cumulative annual supplements issued after each congressional session.

Includes general subject indexes, list of acts by popular name, and a volume of tables providing cross-references from sections of the U. S. Statutes at Large.
Contains all general and permanent laws of the U. S. currently in force.

Arranged by 50 broad subjects known as “titles”.