Government Documents and Microforms

How a Bill Becomes a Law and Various Other Sources

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Texts of United States Laws

Once you have determined that your bill has passed, you can use the Public Law number to locate an actual copy of the law as passed.

Title & Dates of Coverage Location Frequency & Indexing Description
Slip Laws. Middleton Reference
(Government Documents Section)
AE 2.110:

Issued as passed.

First publication of new laws.

Arranged by public law number.

Special features are marginal notes and legislative histories.

Slip laws are replaced by U. S. Statutes at Large.
U. S. Statutes at Large
Middleton Reference
(Government Documents Section)
AE 2.111:

Includes a subject index. Chronological arrangement of slip laws published in bound volumes.

Permanent retrospective record of full texts of all public and private laws passed during a given year.

Laws in these volumes are codified into the U. S. Code.
U. S. Code
2000 edition and supplements
Middleton Reference
(Government Documents Section)
Y 1.2/5:
(Prior editions in Government Documents Stacks, Middleton Room 53)

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”.