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Getting started

Explore this guide for recommended starting and access points to locate secondary sources of law such as books, journals, dictionaries, encyclopedias and commentaries. 


'Secondary legal materials do not have the force or effect of the law; rather, they are publications which relate to, explain and provide commentary on the law.'

- Anita Stuhmcke, Legal Referencing (LexisNexis, 5th ed, 2019) 126.


Secondary source: In legal research, textbooks, legal encyclopaedias and periodical articles which provide restatements of law, often with associated commentary. Secondary sources are contrasted with the primary sources of the law (cases and legislation).

- LexisNexis, Encyclopaedic Australian Legal Dictionary

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Law: secondary sources