All Canada Weekly Summaries
Canadian case digests available on the WestlawNext Canada platform, by subscription to the BestCase Library.
American Digest System
Case digests for American law, comprised of three different series: the Centennial Digest (cases up to 1896); the Decennial Digest (a number of sets covering either 10 or 5 years of cases, commencing in 1896); and the General Digest (volumes covering the period since the most recent Decennial Digest). The case digests are classified using the West Key number system. This publication is the US equivalent to the Canadian Abridgment Case Digests.
American Law Reports
Important American cases are published, with an accompanying annotation summarising other cases dealing with the same point of law. Subsequent cases on the point of law are included in updates to the annotation. Usually referred to as ALR annotations. Available on databases in Lexis and Westlaw.
AmJur 2d
A legal encyclopedia covering American law, published by Lawyers’ Cooperative.
annotated statutes
An annotated statute is published with section by section commentary. The commentary usually contains the legislative history of the section, or references to cases considering the section, or both.
Annual Legislation
This publication reports on new bills and legislative amendments for federal and provincial legislation.


British Columbia and Yukon Judgments Database
A database on Quicklaw containing excellent coverage of full text decisions of British Columbia courts (including those reported in the BCRs), and containing full text decisions from the Yukon Territory.
A government website at that publishes a current consolidation of British Columbia statutes and regulations. It will eventually replace QP LegalEze.
BC Legislative Digest
Available electronically with a subscription to Quickscribe Online. The BC Legislative Digest provides information and alerts about the status of bills and legislation from British Columbia. Prior to June 2010, it was a print publication of Courthouse Libraries BC.
BC Statute Citator
This black looseleaf publication is issued in a new edition each time the BC Statutes are revised. The primary purpose of the publication is to report legislative changes to the revised statutes. However, some judicial consideration of the legislation is included.
BestCase Library
An on-line legal research collection published on the WestlawNext Canada platform through a separate subscription. The BestCase Library provides access to a comprehensive collection of unreported decisions from 1977, and also includes cases reported in reporters previously published by Canada Law Book, such as the Dominion Law Reports, Canadian Criminal Cases, Labour Arbitration Cases, Canadian Labour Arbitration Summaries, and BC Labour Relations Board Decisions. The cases from these reporters are published in PDF, with the same headnotes and editorial enhancements contained in the print reporters.
Black’s Law Dictionary
An American legal dictionary. Available in print, on a mobile app, and on Westlaw in database DI.
British Columbia Appeal Cases
Maritime Law Books reporter covering full text of all decisions of the British Columbia Court of Appeal since June 1991. Available through the Maritime Law Books website.
British Columbia Law Reports
A case reporter covering British Columbia law that commenced publication in 1976. Published by Carswell in print and available on WestlawNext Canada.
British Columbia Reports
A case reporter covering British Columbia law from 1867-1947. It has been made freely available on the Internet. However, it is not easily searchable at the free site, which is best used if you have a citation and simply need to locate the case. The BCRs are easily searchable as part of Quicklaw’s British Columbia and Yukon Judgments database.
British Columbia Trial Cases
Maritime Law Books reporter covering British Columbia trial decisions since 1997. Available through the Maritime Law Books website.
British Columbia Weekly Law Digest
A weekly case digest service published by Carswell, covering decisions of the British Columbia courts, and decisions of the Supreme Court of Canada and federal courts originating in British Columbia.


Canada Digest
The Canada Digest contains summaries of Canadian cases organized under the LexisNexis Classification System, added to Quicklaw by topic. All titles of the Canada Digest are included in Full Service subscriptions. Subscribers to Practice Pages have access to Canada Digest titles relevant to the practice area.
Canada Law Book
Canada Law Book publishes case reporter series (including the Dominion Report Series), annotated legislation, and Canadian treatises.
Canada Statute Citator
This black looseleaf publication is issued in a new edition each time the federal statutes are revised. The primary purpose of the publication is to report legislative changes to the revised statutes. However, some judicial consideration of the legislation is included. Also available in CD ROM format as part of the Canada Statute Service.
Canadian Abridgment
A comprehensive Canadian research tool published by Carswell and comprised of the Key and Research Guide, the General Index, the Consolidated Table of CasesCanadian Abridgment Case DigestsCanadian Current LawCanadian Case CitationsCanadian Statute CitationsAnnual Legislation, and the Index to Canadian Legal Literature. The Abridgment also includes Words and Phrases Judicially Defined in Canadian Courts and Tribunals.
Canadian Abridgment Case Digests
Digests of Canadian cases from 1803 published in the Canadian Abridgment. Available electronically as the Canadian Abridgment Digests on WestlawNext Canada.
Canadian Case Citations
The case citator portion of the Canadian Abridgment. Published in print format as part of the Abridgment. Available electronically through KeyCite on WestlawNext Canada.
Canadian Case Summaries
Canadian and UK case digests available on Quicklaw in CCS database, with Canadian digests from 1968 and some UK digests from as early as 1573.  Includes the Dominion Report Service case summaries.
Canadian Converter
Companion volumes to the third edition of Halsbury’s Laws of England, using the same subject headings and paragraph numbering as the third edition. For each subject title, Canadian cases and statutes are listed that relate to the point of law covered in the third edition of Halsbury’s.
Canadian Current Law
A monthly update service for the Abridgment, updating Canadian Case Digests, Words and Phrases, and the Consolidated Table of Cases.
Canadian Encyclopedic Digest
The CED is a legal encyclopedia, rather than a collection of case digests. A legal topic is summarised, with footnote references to relevant cases and statutes. The CED is published in a Western edition and an Ontario edition, although some titles are the same for both editions. Both versions of the CED are available on WestlawNext Canada and in CD ROM format.
Canadian Statute Citations
A print publication covering judicial consideration of Canadian federal and provincial statutes, as well as regulations and rules. Provides name and citation of the case considering the statutory provision, but no summary of the point of law discussed in the case. Available electronically through KeyCite on WestlawNext Canada.
A case citator service covering Canadian cases decided since 1940. It ceased print publication in 1994, but has been continued on-line by Quicklaw under the name QuickCite.
CanLII provides free access to Canadian judgments, administrative decisions and statutory material. The scope of coverage varies by jurisdiction, and depends on the material provided to CanLII by each jurisdiction. This site provides a useful way to search the growing body of free Canadian legal material using a standardized search interface. The site is funded by law societies and law foundations across Canada and is operated by Lexum.
A publisher of looseleaf services containing consolidated and annotated statutes in a variety of subject areas. Use the CCH Rapid Finder Index to find out if there is a CCH publication on your topic.
Consolidated statute
A consolidated statute is one in which amendments to the statute since the last revision have been incorporated.
Consolidated Table of Cases
This publication lists all cases digested in the Abridgment. It provides parallel citations, and includes lower court decisions and appellate decisions in the same entry. As a result, this publication provides a quick way to determine whether a case you are researching was overturned or upheld on appeal. Lastly, every case entry also indicates the digest reference for the case. If you know of a relevant case, going directly to the digest entry for that case is a fast way into the classification scheme, and will take you to digests of other cases on the same point of law.
Corpus Juris Secundum
A legal encyclopedia covering American law, published by West.


Dominion Law Reports
A case reporter published since 1912, covering important legal decisions from across Canada. Available electronically by subscription to the BestCase Library.



A full text search and retrieval program used extensively for CD ROM and Internet legal research databases. Popular Canadian research tools currently available in this format include British Columbia Practice, and the Dart statute products.


General Index
A subject index to the Canadian Abridgment Case Digests.


Halsbury’s Laws of Canada
A new legal encyclopedia covering Canadian law. Available in print, and available electronically through Quicklaw. Access to the full publication is included for Full Service subscribers. For subscribers to Practice Page areas, relevant titles will be included in your flat-rate subscription.
Halsbury’s Laws of England
An authoritative legal encyclopedia covering English law. Currently in its 4th edition, with cumulative supplements and updates. The 3rd edition includes the Canadian Converter.
Hein Online
Hein Online is an electronic subscription service containing an extensive collection of full text law journals in PDF. It also contains historical Canadian legislation, Supreme Court of Canada decisions, and the English Reports. Access to Hein Online is freely available to members of the Law Society of BC from their desktops through the Reading Room at Courthouse Libraries BC.


Index to Canadian Legal Literature
An index covering Canadian legal books and periodicals. Available in print form as part of the Canadian Abridgment and electronically on WestlawNext Canada. Available under Legal Indices & Tables on Quicklaw.
Index to Legal Periodicals
A print index to over 750 legal periodicals from US and Commonwealth jurisdictions. Available in CD ROM format as WilsonDisc. Also available in databases on Westlaw (ILP) and Lexis (LAWREV;ILP), but not for educational users.



Key and Research Guide
A black looseleaf binder that contains a list of subject titles for the Canadian Abridgment Case Digests, and a key to the full classification scheme for the digests.
The citator used in Westlaw products for ascertaining the history of a case and whether a case or statute has been judicially considered or commented on in secondary sources. KeyCiteCanada on LawSource includes judicial consideration and secondary source commentary on Canadian cases, judicial consideration of Canadian legislation, and judicial consideration by Canadian courts of cases from other jurisdictions.


An electronic research tool for Canadian case law which is part of the WestlawNext Canada family of products. Contains the Abridgment Case Digests, the Canadian Encyclopedic Digest, Canadian case law, KeyCite for Canadian cases and statutes, Words & Phrases, statutes and some regulations, rules of court for Canadian jurisdictions, the Index to Canadian Legal Literature, and the ability to link to documents in other Westlaw products.
Lawyer’s Weekly
A Canadian legal newspaper published weekly by Butterworths and available on Quicklaw. Excerpts are available on the Lawyer’s Weekly web page. Contains articles and case digests.
An index to over 850 legal periodicals from US and Commonwealth jurisdictions. Available in print form as Current Law. Available electronically by Internet subscription and CD ROM. Also in databases on Westlaw (LRI) and Lexis (LAWREV;LGLIND), but not for educational users.
Lexis is a large collection of computerised legal information, covering primarily American, English, European and international legal material. Lexis includes Canadian cases, statutes, and legal periodicals in the Canada library. However, Quicklaw (now owned by Lexis) is a more complete service for Canadian law. Lexis is available on the Internet at Full information about Lexis is available at the Lexis website. To determine which databases to use, check the Lexis/Nexis Searchable Directory of Online Sources. Canadian users can view information specifically related to their needs at Lexis-Nexis Canada.
LLMC is a non-profit cooperative of libraries with a growing collection of digital legal materials consisting of international historical documents. Includes some Canadian materials. See what’s included here.


Maritime Law Books
A family of Canadian case reporters, all using a sophisticated topic number classification system. Available electronically at the Maritime Law Books website.  Case reporters published by Maritime Law Books include British Columbia Appeal Cases, Alberta Reports, Saskatchewan Reports, Manitoba Reports, National Reporter, Federal Trial Reports, Atlantic Provinces Reports, Western Appeal Cases, Ontario Appeal Cases, Yukon Reports, New Brunswick Reports, Nova Scotia Reports, and Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island Reports. Electronic research in this family of reporters is enhanced if you search on the topic name and number for your legal issue.



Ontario Reports
A case reporter published since 1882 covering Ontario decisions. Between 1901 and 1931, the reporter was called the Ontario Law Reports.


Primary sources
Statutes, regulations, by-laws, case law, and administrative rulings are primary sources of law. Although secondary sources may rationalize and explain the law more clearly than the primary sources, the primary sources establish the law. Therefore, in legal memoranda, opinion letters, legal argument, and facta, you must cite primary sources to support your conclusions and arguments.


QP LegalEze
QP LegalEze is a subscription-based electronic research tool published by the British Columbia Queen’s Printer. It contains a searchable current consolidation of the British Columbia statutes and regulations, and also publishes orders-in-council, legislative history tables, bills, Hansard, consolidated in force information, regulations bulletins, the full text of private Acts, archived versions of earlier consolidations, BC Gazette Parts I and II, and corporate registry notices. The content on QP LegalEze is gradually being transitioned over to a free site at
A case citation service for Canadian cases and legislation on Quicklaw.
A Canadian collection of computer research databases, containing statutes, comprehensive coverage of full text Canadian cases since 1986 (with stronger historical coverage for some jurisdictions and case reporters), a case citator, and a variety of case digests and topical databases. Full information about Quicklaw is available at
Quickscribe publishes British Columbia legislation in print and on-line by paid subscription. Quickscribe also publishes the BC Legislative Digest.


Regulations are subordinate legislation, passed by the provincial or federal Cabinet pursuant to delegated powers in Acts of the legislature or parliament.
RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication. RSS feeds can be used to send you new case law and legislation, news articles, government information, and blog entries. You receive free information feeds from various Internet sources so that you don’t have to visit individual sites to obtain the information. To use RSS, you have to set up an RSS reader. Free web-based options for this include Feedly, The Old Reader, and the Digg Reader. Another option is to use your desktop email program to receive and organize feeds. Once you have determined the set-up for your RSS reader, and found information of interest to you, check for RSS subscription information and set up the subscription. An easy first step is to subscribe to a CanLII RSS feed for cases and legislation for your jurisdiction, or for updates on your CanLII searches.


Secondary sources
Secondary sources in traditional legal research are either commentaries on the primary sources of law, or finding tools used to locate the primary sources of law. Texts, periodical articles, and encyclopedias are examples of commentaries. Digests, citators and indices are examples of finding tools.
Sessional volumes
Each legislative session, new legislation is passed. This legislation is eventually published in a sessional volume. If you are conducting legislative research and need to find an Act, you usually look it up either in the sessional volume for the year in which it was passed, or in the consolidated revised statutes. The sessional volumes contain the official version of the statutes. However, they are cumbersome to use because amendments are not consolidated in the sessional volumes.
A co-operative blog about Canadian legal research and related technology at
Statute citator
This term can refer to two different types of publications. A statute citator’s primary function is to keep track of legislative amendments. Some statute citators purport to also cover judicial consideration of statutes, but usually do not achieve or strive for comprehensive coverage in this respect. For example, the Canada Statute Citator contains some judicial considerations, but is primarily concerned with legislative amendments. By contrast, the Abridgment Canadian Statute Citations is concerned solely with judicial consideration of statutes.
Statute revision
Canadian statutes are periodically revised to incorporate and consolidate amendments to the statutes. This is traditionally done every 15 to 20 years. The British Columbia statutes were last revised in 1996. The federal statutes were last revised in 1985. Now that legislation is consolidated on an ongoing basis, there is less need for general revisions. However, limited revisions often occur, where a particular statute is completely replaced by a new Act.
Statutes of British Columbia Judicially Considered
This Carswell looseleaf publication covers judicial consideration of British Columbia statutes. A new edition is published each time a new statute revision is completed. In addition to giving the name and citation of the case considering the statutory provision, a brief summary of the point of law is provided. Coverage is selective, so other sources should be reviewed in addition to this publication.
Supreme Court of Canada Reports Service
This Butterworths service contains indexed digests of Supreme Court of Canada decisions since the formation of the court. The first three volumes contain digests up to 1970, and the subsequent volumes contain digests after 1970.


The Digest
A case digest service covering English and Commonwealth law.
Topical reporters
Some case law reporters contain cases on a specific area of law, such as the Canadian Cases on the Law of Torts, or the Canadian Insurance Law Reporter. In addition to reporting cases, these publications often contain annotations commenting on particular cases. The cumulative indices for topical reporters can be a useful finding tool. Many Canadian topical reporters are available electronically through WestlawNext Canada. Quicklaw has also created several topical case collections that can be searched.




Weekly Criminal Bulletin
Digests of Canadian criminal cases. Available on the WestlawNext Canada platform as part of CriminalSource, or by separate subscription.
West Key number system
A subject classification system used in West case reporters, case digests, and citators to facilitate legal research.
Western Weekly Reports
A case reporter published since 1911 containing decisions of the Western provinces and the Supreme Court of Canada. Available on WestlawNext Canada.
A commercial vendor providing access to American cases, statutes, periodicals and other legal material in electronic form. Canadian users access Westlaw through WestlawNext Canada.
WestlawNext Canada
WestlawNext Canada is an Internet-based platform for Canadian legal research. Modules available on this platform include LawSourceInsolvencySourceFamilySourceCriminalSource, EmploymentSource, LabourSource, SecuritiesSource and the BestCase Library. LawSource contains the Abridgment Digests, the Canadian Encyclopedic Digest, Canadian case law, KeyCite for Canadian cases and statutes, statutes and regulations, rules of court for Canadian jurisdictions, the Index to Canadian Legal Literature, and the ability to link to documents in other Westlaw products.
WorldCat is an online catalogue of publications in libraries world-wide. A search for a publication will display information about the author, publisher, subject classification and ISSN/OCLC references. It will also show whether it is available through the Internet and which libraries carry the publication. The list of libraries can be customized by location using a postal code or geographical place name.