Skip to main content

Iowa Legal Research: Sources of Iowa Law: Starting Points

Reading Legal Citations

Legal citation is rather unique. In brief, the part of a legal citation that indicates where something is published typically includes the following elements:

  • Volume or Title number
  • Publication (usually appears in an abbreviated form). This may be followed by a series designation.
  • First page or section number Note: the symbol § means section.

Examples:
421 N.W.2d 877 refers to volume 421 of the North Western Reporter, Second Series page 877

44 U.S.C. § 1901 refers to Title 44 of the United States Code, section 1901

Iowa Code § 336.8 refers to section 336.8 of the Code of Iowa

I.C.A. § 336.8 refers to section 336.8 of the Iowa Code Annotated.

For a more extensive explanation of legal citation, see

Starting Points: Legal Research Guides

Starting Points: Research Tasks

Starting Points: CALI Lessons

These online tutorials are available to all Drake Law School students.

Law Library Web Site · Locator Guide & Maps · Hours · Interlibrary Loan · Ask A Librarian

Drake University Law Library • 2507 University Ave. • Des Moines, Iowa 50311