How to Find State Law Comparisons, Surveys, and Compilations

This is a quick and dirty guide to free and not-free (usually subscription) databases for this kind of research; it is not a comprehensive list. (And novice researchers should be reminded that the same statutory language is not always used across states to accomplish the same purpose.)


NOT FREE, but priceless if you require thorough and fast research results:

  • The best and most comprehensive collection is Nyberg / Boast: “Subject Compilations of State Laws.” This collection is available in print (at some law libraries) and is now available online (HeinOnline), though not generally to mere mortals unless they have database privileges at a large law library or large law firm that subscribes. (But your local public librarian may be able to ask another librarian to run a search on a specific topic.)
  • There was also a book, not recently updated, but still useful, and maybe at your local libraries: “National Survey of State Laws,” by Richard Leiter (not updated regularly).

Superseded Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) Appearing on Oregon Legislature Website: 1953-1997

Legislative Counsel have created an ORS Archives website where they will be posting the 1953-1997 ORS.  Currently the 1953-1957 statutes have been posted to the website:

Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS): 1953-1997 Archives

Remaining statutes will be posted as time allows and the Constitutions, Indexes, Prefaces, etc. will be added after all of the statutes have all been posted.

This has been and continues to be a laborious process and Legislative Counsel have been making steady progress – so tell your Legislators to thank their Legislative Counsel staff for this work!  It will save legislators, lawyers, legal researchers, law librarians, and clients both time and money.

(We had the easy work (relatively speaking) and “just” did the Gutbuster scanning; they had to contend with the Oregon Legislature’s bureaucracy. Oh my.)

Now that it’s Legal: Same-sex Wedding, Marriage, and Divorce Law in Oregon

A Multnomah County Librarian has posted this practical and lighthearted collection of wedding, marriage, and divorce law links:

“Now that it’s legal: same-sex marriage and the law,” by Emily-Jane D., Jun 04, 2014

And maybe it’s also time to update my Engagement Ring Law blog post!

Oregon Court Rules Updates: ORAP and eCourt: Out of Cycle Amendments

Lawyers know this, but not all self-represented litigants do: you have to know your Court Rules, in cycle adoptions and out of cycle amendments.

For example:  Chief Justice Balmer and Chief Judge Haselton recently signed orders adopting temporary amendments to the Oregon Rules of Appellate Procedure (ORAP):

These are new rules regarding PDF-Archival (PDF-A) documents, documents filed under seal, filing deadlines, embedded audio or video files, and much more. See these Chief Justice Orders:

CJO 14-024-14-05: Rule 211A
CJO 14-025-14-06: Rule 211B

Aging in Place: Staying at Home Forum Hillsboro, Oregon, 6/18/14

Staying at Home Forum: Creating the Future You and Your Loved Ones Desire

“Learn about key aging related issues and options, accessible home features, local resources, and actions you can take to successfully stay at home and in your community for as long as possible.

Join AARP Oregon, Villages NW, Unlimited Choices, Lifelong Housing Coalition, and Washington County Disability, Aging and Veterans Services for this FREE workshop.

WHEN: Wednesday,June 18th from 9:30am to 12:00pm. Doors open at 9:00am for check in and refreshments. 

WHERE: Hillsboro Civic Center Auditorium, 150 E Main Street, Hillsboro 

RSVP: Space is limited and registration is required. Register online or call toll-free 1-877-926-8300

Family Law Self-Help Videos at Washington County (Oregon) Circuit Court

Family Law Self-Help Videos in English and Spanish, including:

Introduction to Washington County Circuit Court Family Law Videos


Discovery (providing information to or gathering information from the other party)

How to Prepare for your Family Law Trial





Descubrimiento (proporcionar información a o recopilación de información de la otra parte)

Cómo prepararse para su juicio sobre derecho familiar


Oregon Innocence Project (and April 9th Benefit and Launch Party)

Oregon Innocence Project:

The Oregon Innocence Project (OIP) is a joint project of the Oregon Justice Resource Center (an independent nonprofit based out of Lewis & Clark Law School) and Metropolitan Public Defender whose mission is to (1) exonerate the innocent, (2) educate and train law students, and (3) promote legal reforms aimed at preventing wrongful convictions….” [Link to the OIP.]

The Oregon Innocence Project Launch and Benefit Party, April 9, 2014

Featured Speaker:
Barry Scheck, Co-founder and Co-Director of the national Innocence Project

Special Guests:
Exoneree and former NFL player Brian Banks
Secretary of State Kate Brown
The Honorable Paul De Muniz
Best selling author Phillip Margolin
Civil rights attorney Elden Rosenthal
Oregon State Rep. Jennifer Williamson