Skip to Main Content
University of Oregon
UO Libraries

Indian and Tribal Law Research

Selected law resources for federal and tribal Indian research

Law Library Help

 Email Phone

Law Reference Librarian

Profile Photo
Angus Nesbit
278F Knight Law Center
1221 University of Oregon
Eugene, OR 97403-1221
Subjects: Law

How to Use this Guide

This guide is a selected list of resources for starting research in Federal Indian Law and Tribal law. It includes a selection of legal, governmental and public policy resources in various formats on American Indian law. Some of the databases mentioned, such as Lexis and Westlaw, are limited to UO law student use only. However, most of the resources listed are available to all members of the UO community.


American Indian law covers the body of law concerning tribes and their interactions with federal and state authorities, as well as among themselves. Historically, American Indian law has been chiefly influenced and shaped by federal Indian policy. Tribes are generally considered self-governing, independent entities. However, this independence is subject to the power of Congress to regulate the status of tribes.

A distinction worth noting is the fact that "tribal law" deals specifically with the internal law that governs the affairs of each tribe and its members. Sources of tribal law include oral tradition, tribal constitutions and codes, as well as tribal case law.

Search terms

The following search terms are useful when using the library catalog, databases and other online sources:

  • american Indian law
  • federal Indian law
  • Indian law
  • native American law
  • tribal law

This guide is organized by topics listed in the menu on the left side of this page.  

If you need assistance retrieving a book, please contact the Circulation desk in the law school library, (541) 346-3088 or If you need assistance accessing an article, finding any other resource, or if you would like to add a resource to this guide, please contact Megan Austin or our Law Reference service.

Introductory Resources

Research Guides

American Indian Law: A Beginner's Guide, Library of Congress

Indian Law Research Guide, University of New Mexico Law School

Indian Law Research Guide, Arizona State University Law School Library

Native American Law Guide: Federal Indian Law & Tribal Law Materials, UCLA Law Library

Native American Law Research, University of Oklahoma Law Library

American Indian Law Research Guide, Harvard Law School Library

Indian Law Research Guide, National Indian Law Library (NARF)