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CRES Research

Researching Conflict and Dispute Resolution at UO Libraries


The United States Code (USC) is published by the government and contains only the text of the federal statutes. An annotated code (like Westlaw’s United States Code Annotated) includes not only the text of the statute but summaries of cases and law journal articles interpreting the statute, and other research help.

The USC is organized by Title, Chapter and then Section.  A citation to a statute only includes the title (16) and section (1538) of a statute separated by USC: 16 U.S.C. § 1538.

Finding Statutes

There are multiple ways to find statutes within Westlaw and depending on the information you have, some ways are more efficient.


If you know the citation, enter it in the global search box: 


Subject or Popular Name

To find a statute by subject, select Statutes & Court Rules:


Then select United States Code Annotated (USCA):


In the panel on the right, select either USCA Index or USCA Popular Name Table:


The Statute Section



See the text of the section of the statute as well as the statutory scheme at the top.  This is codified in Title 16 USC (Conservation), Chapter 35 Endangered Species. Select the Table of Contents to view all of the sections in the statute.

Statutory history is at the bottom of the page under Credits. This tells you when the statute was first enacted, and then later amended, and by what public laws.

Finding Cases that Applied the Statute

To find cases that have applied/interpreted the statute, see either Notes of Decisions or Citing References.

Notes of Decisions are case summaries written by West’s attorney-editors and they summarize points of law interpreting the statute; these cases are handpicked by West. Notes of Decisions are organized by headings and subheadings and are a good way to pinpoint potentially relevant cases interpreting your statute.  Use either the tab at the top of the page or the right panel to access the Notes of Decisions:



Citing References includes everything that has cited the statute section, including cases.  Select the Citing References tab at the top of the screen then select cases:


Finding Articles that Discussed the Statute

To find articles from legal publications that discussed a statute section, go the Citing References Tab and select Secondary Sources:


Go to the left pane, and select Law Reviews: