Georgetown Law
Georgetown Law Library

District of Columbia In-Depth

This State Guide provides an in-depth look at sources of law within the District of Columbia.

Where to Locate D.C. Laws

Where to find Bills and Bill Information?

  • District of Columbia Register (DCR)
    It is the official publication of the D.C. government for acts, resolutions, and various information about the actions of the Council of the District of Columbia (such as resolutions and notices of council hearings), and actions of the Executive Branch and Independent Agencies (such as proposed rulemaking and emergency rulemaking). It comes out every week during Council Period (mid-September to mid-July). It has an annual index.

  • Lexis
  • Westlaw
    • DC-BILLS (current only, track and view full text of all available bills)
    • DC-LH (Bill histories, committee reports, and vote records from 1999 to present)
  • Council of the District of Columbia Legislative Information Management System (LIMS)
    It is a searchable and browseable database of full-text bills, proposed and adopted resolutions, and acts. It also gives status information. Laws can be searched by keyword, and browsed by number, by Council Member, or by Committee (8th Council Period, 1989 - present).
  • Subject Index to Bills (KFD1210 .S9, 1982-1995, 2003, now cancelled) provides subject access to bills and bill title, bill number, D.C. Act number, D.C. Law number, and DCR citation.
  • Council Calendar
    Daily schedule, legislative agenda, hearing notices, oversight and budget schedule, and council and committee meetings.
  • Legislative Meeting Agenda (LIMS) 
    Provides agendas of meetings (14th Council Period, 2001 to present).

Where to find ACTS and LAWS?

  • Council of the District of Columbia Legislative Information Management System (LIMS) (8th Council Period - present) 
    It is a searchable and browsable database of full-text bills, proposed and adopted resolutions, and acts. It also gives status information. Laws can be searched by keyword, and browsed by number, by Council Member, or by Committee.
  • District of Columbia Session Law Service (Thomson/West)
    Includes laws and emergency acts. It is available:
  • District of Columbia Code: Advance Legislative Service (LexisNexis)
    It includes laws and emergency acts. It is available:
  • District of Columbia Statutes-at-Large KFD1225.D4 (1976-1986, ceased publication)
    Contains the text of D.C. laws, resolutions and Mayor's Orders

  • Legislative Services Division
    The Legislative Services Division (202-724-8050) also makes laws and acts available.

Where to find the D.C. Code?

  • District of Columbia Official Code
    • Print: KFD 1230 2001 A2
    • Westlaw
      • DC-ST (unannotated)
      • DC-ST-ANN (annotated)
      • DC-STMANNYY (historical, annotated) (1990 - ) (Note: YY in the database identifier is the last two digits of the year (e.g., the database for the 1990 version is DC-STMANN90))
  • Lexis District of Columbia Code, Annotated
  • The Law Library has old D.C. Code (1967, 1973, 1981) in Historic Core. Ask at the Williams Circulation Desk for these volumes.
  • Legislative Services Division
    Suite 2, 1350 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, DC 20004 , 202-724-8050
    It maintains a collection of legislative history materials, including recordings of legislative meetings and committee reports (1975-present).
  • District of Columbia Code (Free Online, Unannotated)

Where to find DC Regulations?

  • District of Columbia Municipal Regulations
    This is the official version of the current regulations. There is no index to the 31-title print set. There is a commercial publication called the DCMR Deskbook (KFD1240 .H3 1989 (updated annually)). Use the D.C. Register to update the information in the DCMR. The D.C. Register contains "List of Sections Amended of D.C. Municipal Regulations" in the first issue of each month. If the List of Sections Amended is not published for the month, check the Final Rulemaking section of the Table of Contents of each weekly edition of the DCR published since the last update of the DCMR.

    It is available:

    • Print: KFD1235 1981 .A23 (print version is out-of-date)
    • Electronic:
      • DCMR Online (official)
        Searchable by Rule Number, Agency, Chapter Number, and full text
        Note: The official, online version was recently revised and contains the most accurate, official, up-to-date information. Other versions of D.C. municipal regulations may contain errors.

  • West's District of Columbia Municipal Regulations
    "[O]fficial regulations issued by agencies in the District of Columbia, as updated by West."

Code of D.C. Municipal Regulations (Weil's Code) 
The unofficial but up-to-date compilation of the DC administrative code. Updated every month, well-indexed. Use the D.C. Register to update the information in the DCMR. The D.C. Register contains "List of Sections Amended of D.C. Municipal Regulations" in the first issue of each month. If the List of Sections Amended is not published for the month, check the Final Rulemaking section of the Table of Contents of each weekly edition of the DCR published since the last update of the DCMR.

It is available:

  • District of Columbia Register (DCR) gives brief information of actions of the Council of the District of Columbia (such as resolutions and notices of council hearings), and Actions of the Executive Branch and Independent Agencies (such as proposed rulemaking and emergency rulemaking). It also publishes all resolutions and enacted Acts. It comes out every week during Council Period (mid-September to mid-July). It has an annual index.

    It is available:

Where to find D.C. Court of Appeals Opinions?

Where to find Superior Court of DC Opinions?

  • Lexis: DC Superior Court of the District of Columbia from 2001
  • The Daily Washington Law Reporter KFD1247.D3 (1875 - )
    Provides abstracts of selected daily cases. Opinions from 1979 to present are also available electronically.
  • Tax Division, Superior Court of the District of Columbia
    Tax Division cases are available through the DC Courts's Court Cases Online search.
  • Superior Court of the District of Columbia
    Clerk of the Superior Court: Duane B. Delaney
    Moultrie Courthouse
    500 Indiana Ave., NW , Rm 2500
    Washington , D.C. 20001
    Tel: 202-879-1400

Where to find United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and US District Court for the District of Columbia opinions?

Finding Aids:

[Digests are also available in Westlaw.]

Where to find Rules of the D.C. Court of Appeals?

  • D.C. Court of Appeals (includes Rules of the D.C. Court of Appeals (pre-2004), Current Rules, Order Promulgating Revised Rules, and Schedule of Fees and Costs)
  • District of Columbia Court Rules Annotated KFD1729 .A193 (1982 - )
  • Citations to the Rules of the Courts of the District of Columbia KFD1729.A14 R8
  • Court Rules Service KFD1729 .A2
    Contains court rules for D.C. Superior Court, D.C. Court of Appeals, U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for D.C., and the U.S. Court of Appeals for D.C.
  • Lexis: DC - District of Columbia State & Federal Court Rules
  • Westlaw: DC-RULES

Where to Find Superior Court Rules?