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Massachusetts Legal Research


Legal research requires the use of many different sources. The type and nature of the sources used often depends upon the issues under examination, as well as jurisdictional considerations. State-based legal research may involve the use of sources that are unique to that jurisdiction.

As a general rule of thumb, it is advisable to start Massachusetts legal research in a secondary source, particularly if you are not familiar with the area of law.  This guide provides an overview of the legal research process in Massachusetts, including secondary and primary sources.

Unless otherwise indicated, all of the call numbers listed in this guide are for the Boston College Law Library’s Massachusetts Collection, located on Level 4 of the library. For assistance in locating materials in the collection, please consult a member of the library staff.