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Researching Legal Ethics & Professional Responsibility

This research guide provides an overview of research sources on legal ethics and professional responsibility.

Overview

The restatement that you would be using to research legal ethics and professional responsibility is the  Restatement (Third) of the Law Governing Lawyers.

Restatements of the Law are highly regarded uniform statements of the common law produced by the American Law Institute (ALI), an organization comprised of prominent American judges, lawyers, and law professors. Each restatement is arranged first by chapter, then by topic and title, and then by section. Restatement sections generally begin with a "black letter" statement of the law followed by comments, illustrations, and reporter notes.

The appendix volumes of each set contain annotated citations of cases that cite that particular restatement.

Finding Tools Within Restatements

Index -- Note that there is no comprehensive index for the restatements

  • Restatement, First Series contains a one-volume index for all restatements in the first series
  • Each Restatement within the first series also has its own index
  • Restatements, Second and Third Series have indexes either for each volume, in the last volume, or in a separate volume

Table of Contents

Appendix Volumes

Restatements in Print

Restatements Online

Citation

Bluebook

Rule 12.9 of The Bluebook (21st ed. 2020) covers the citation of restatements.

Elements

The citation should include the following:

  • Restatement series (italicized or underlined)
  • Section
  • Copyright date of the volume

Example

Restatement (Third) of Torts § 46 (2012).

ALWD

Rule 23 of the ALWD Citation Manual (7th ed.) covers the citation of restatements.

Elements

The citation should include the following:

  • Restatement series (italicized or underlined)
  • Section
  • Copyright date

Example

Restatement (Third) of Torts § 46 (2012).

CALI Lesson

Using the Restatements of the Law (20 min.)

Available to Law Students only (see a reference librarian if you do not have a CALI activation code).

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