How to Do Online Research on Delaware Statutes and Other Delaware Law
Convenient Delaware State Website Publishes the Laws
Delaware was the first state in the Union. Like all states, Delaware has a state code that contains all the statutes passed by the legislature. The Delaware General Assembly passes the laws for this state. Delaware also has a Delaware Constitution and Administrative Code. These sources provide starting points for legal research. You can use the text of these laws as a starting point. However, research on Delaware case law may be important. If you have an important legal problem, get a Delaware attorney to assist you.
Access the online home page for the Delaware Code. You can see on the first page that the Delaware Constitution is right there at the top. The Titles are the individual parts of the Delaware Code. If you click on a Title, you will see the Chapters within that Title. Click on a Chapter to see the Sections. The Sections and subsections contain the actual Delaware statutes passed by the legislature.
There are two main ways to research the Delaware Code. You can use the search box at the top to look for keywords in the text of the code. You can also just find the area of law you are researching by looking at the Titles and Chapters. This can be troublesome because areas of the law do not fit neatly into one Title. You will find that relevant material may be spread out among all the different Titles.
For example, you can find out how to register a corporation in Title 8. But you will generally need to find the taxation Title to get information on corporate taxes. Using the search feature may help you save time in finding the right Title for the specific information you are looking for.
Another issue is that not all law is comprised of statutes in a state Code like the Delaware Code. The legislative branch in each state and the federal government can delegate rule-making authority to administrative agencies. Thus, you may not find the information you are looking for in the Delaware Code. You may need to research the Delaware Administrative Code to find your information.
There are also other sources of Delaware laws. For example, Delaware state courts issue opinions in court cases. These are crucial interpretations of the law that other courts look to for guidance in future cases. In some cases, a court opinion is binding on a court. So no legal research is complete without a thorough round of research on Delaware case law. This case law also has a search feature that you can use to find information. You can find more links to Delaware law at FindLaw.
When you have a legal problem, it is best to contact a Delaware attorney who is licensed in the state. Use these online copies of Delaware law as a starting point for legal research. Once you have a grasp of the law, you can then speak more intelligently with an attorney about how to solve your legal problem.