A tough act to follow: How to find legislation by its popular name

July 9, 2010

From the Westlaw Reference AttorneysWestlaw tip: How popular can a name be if no one knows where to find it? Congress assigns many pieces of legislation a “popular name.” These may be as well known as the USA PATRIOT Act, or as obscure as the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Restoration Act of 2000.

Westlaw has useful tools to help you find where these acts have been codified. Go to the USCA database search screen and choose the “Pop. Name Table” link in the upper right-hand corner. Then select the letter your act starts with and scroll down, clicking to the next part if necessary.

When you click the name of the act, a table will display showing where the sections of the act were codified. It also shows the Public Law number, which you can use to do a Find of the entire act.

(Provided by West Reference Attorneys)