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Ohio Legal Research

Ohio Regulations

The legislature often passes broad based legislation that establishes a regulatory scheme. The nuts and bolts of the scheme will often not appear in the Ohio Revised Code. It is left to Ohio's administrative agencies to flesh out these laws and carry out the will of the legislature. Agencies do this by promulgating regulations, which are also referred to as rules. Regulations have the same force and effect as any law passed by the legislature.

The Ohio Administrative Code (OAC) is the principal means whereby the law embodied in rules is communicated.  The OAC is issued annually and contains the full text of, or reference to, every rule that has been adopted by the agencies of Ohio.  It is arranged by agency and is broken up into title, chapter and section numbers.  The official text of the administrative agency rules can be found in Baldwin's Ohio Administrative Code, which may be cited in the Courts of Ohio. 

The Ohio Monthly Record (OMR) gives notice to the public of repealed rules and proposed rules and publishes new and amended rules in chronological order on a monthly basis.  The OMR is a print only publication and is used to update the OAC in the interim between publications of annual supplements.  Note: The OMR is generally about 2 months behind in publication.

The Register of Ohio is used by agencies to give public notice of their intention to adopt a rule.  This notice includes a synopsis of the proposed rule, a statement of the agency's reason or purpose for proposing the rule, and the date, time and place of the public hearing.  The Register is an online only source which is updated weekly.  The Register is used to update the OAC and OMR in checking for new rules or recent changes to existing rules.

Citation Rules

OAC Citation

Finding Ohio Regulations - Print

 

1. To find an Ohio regulation, use the OAC (Call Number KFO440 .O37 1994, Location LAW Ohio 1). Turn to the Index located in the first volume of the set.

2. Locate the word(s) and phrases associated with your legal question, and write down the citation to the relevant section in the OAC. For example, if you wanted to find the regulations dealing with the replacement of coupons under the food stamp program, the index would lead you to administrative code rule number 5101:4-7-11.

3. Go to the volume of the OAC which has your Title and Chapter in it, and look up the relevant section.

4. The OAC is updated by supplements and the Ohio Monthly Record (Call Number KFO36.O45, Location LAW Ohio 1). In the back of each issue of the OMR is a cumulative rule number table, listing which regulations have been amended, repealed etc, and in which pamphlet of the OMR to look in to see the change. To update a regulation go to the most recent issue of the OMR and check the rule number table to see if your particular regulation has been changed.

5. Check the Register of Ohio for new rules or recent changes to existing rules.

Finding Ohio Regulations - Online

The OAC is available for free over the Internet, courtesy of Lawriter. The currency of the OAC is indicated on the site’s homepage.  The OAC also available to University of Cincinnati students and faculty through Westlaw and Lexis Advance.

 

To access the OAC through Westlaw:

1. Go to Ohio Regulations (OH-ADC).

2. Search using terms and connectors, natural language or the table of contents.

3. Update the OAC using supplements and the Ohio Monthly Record (Call Number KFO36.045, Location LAW Ohio1).

4. Check the Register of Ohio for new rules or recent changes to existing rules.

 

To access the OAC through Lexis Advance:

1. Log on to Lexis Advance and select Browse Sources.

2. Search for OH - Ohio Administrative Code.

3. Select View Table of Contents.

4. Search within the Table of Contents and Documents using terms and connectors or natural language.

5. Update the OAC using supplements and the Ohio Monthly Record (Call Number KFO36.045, Location LAW Ohio1).

6. Check the Register of Ohio for new rules or recent changes to existing rules.

Comparative Chart - Print v Electronic Ohio Administrative Code

Available Features

Print (Baldwin’s)

Westlaw

Lexis

Lawriter

Terms & Connector Searching

N

Y

Y

Limited

Natural Language Searching

N

Y

Y

Y

Table of Contents Searching

Y

Y

Y

Y

Database Scope of Coverage

N

Y

Y

Y

Keycite/Shepard’s

N

Y

N

N

Book Browse

Y

Y

Y

Y

Official Version

Y

Y

N

N

User’s Guide (vol. 1)

Y

N

N

N

Ohio Administrative Law Handbook & Agency Directory (vol. 17)

Y

Y

(OHADML)

N

N

Ohio Monthly Record (OMR)

Y

N

N

N

Register of Ohio

N

N

Y

N

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