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California Legislative History: Cases and Commentary

This guide provides an overview of California legislative history materials available at Rains Library, as well as a how-to guide to perform your own legislative history.

Using Annotated Codes to Locate Cases and Secondary Sources on California Legislative History

In addition to explaining the full history of each statute, both Lexis and Westlaw provide annotations (Case Notes and Research References on Lexis; Notes of Decision and Context & Analysis on Westlaw) and citators (Shepardize this document on Lexis; Citing References on Westlaw) identifying cases and secondary sources that have analyzed the statute.

Skim or search the annotations and citator to see if others have addressed the legislative history of your statute. Legislative history materials are not binding but cases can be, so a case interpreting the history of your statute is usually preferable to legislative history documents. Secondary sources are not binding but can jump start your research and identify the legislative history materials you are looking for.

Searching for Additional Commentary on California Legislative History

In addition to checking the annotations, you may also specifically want to check:

You can also search law review articles for additional coverage of your legislation at:

Finally, you can search for press coverage of your legislation at: