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Michael Dahn is the computer services reference librarian at the Stetson University College of Law, Charles A. Dana Law Library. He is also the Webmaster for the College of Law. He regularly teaches Continuing Legal Education courses for Stetson on “Using the Internet in the Practice of Law” and has made presentations about the Internet to the NLRB and the FBI. He is also on webmaster teams for both the Southeastern Association of Law Libraries (SEAALL) and the Academic Law Libraries Special Interest Section of AALL (ALL-SIS).
(Archived May 1, 1998)
The Internet has much to offer the researcher interested in labor and employment law, and finding relevant material is pretty straight-forward. This guide is designed to help you find such material with a minimum of time and effort.
There are many logical ways to approach a “guided tour” of Internet resources. I’ve divided this guide into three sections: labor and employment law mega pages, individual labor and employment “must see” sites, and miscellaneous resources. The mega pages offer one-stop shopping for labor and employment law resources on the Internet. The “must see” pages do not try to list every available labor law resource, but they offer significant value to the labor law researcher — and finally, I’ve included links to some miscellaneous labor and employment law materials to give you an idea of the variety of resources that are available.
Please note that the following links are to resources that are available for free on the Internet. There are many services offering labor and employment law materials over the Internet for a fee — these are not covered here.
I often tell the attendees of my Internet legal research workshops that if I were given the ridiculous demand of somehow condensing the three-hour workshop into five seconds, I would just blurt out, “http://www.findlaw.com!” It’s that good for legal resources on the Internet generally, and its listing of labor and employment law resources is no exception.
FindLaw’s labor and employment law resources, like many of its subject listings, is divided into eight categories: Laws and Government Documents, Journals, Newsletters and Articles; Mailing Lists and Usenet Groups, Message Board, Government Agencies, Outlines, Software, and a list of miscellaneous labor law resources.
The Laws and Government Documents section contains links to much of the U.S. federal primary law material that is available on the Internet, including links to Title 29 of the U.S. Code, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the OSHA Act of 1970. Surprisingly, they do not have links to the NLRB or FLRA decisions that are available for free on the Internet (more about those later).
The Journals, Newsletters, and Articles section lists many articles on labor law topics from law firm Web sites or similar sources. These are materials that you are not likely to find anywhere but on the Internet (easily).
If you have not yet tapped into the power of electronic mailing lists, do not wait any longer. The Mailing Lists section not only lists most of the available labor law related mailing lists, but it also provides instructions for subscribing to them — and for a couple of the lists, it provides links to the list archives as well.
The Government Agencies section provides a list of U.S. government agencies that would be relevant to the labor law researcher. (If you don’t find the agency you’re looking for, try the Federal Web Locator or GovBot.)
The Outlines section and the Software section are not extensive, but they may be useful. The Outlines section simply has links to two Employment Discrimination outlines, and the Software section lists a few software programs that might be of interest to the labor law practitioner.
And finally, on the main labor law page, FindLaw provides a massive list of miscellaneous labor law resources. This list (and all of the labor law links included in FindLaw’s other sections) almost obviates the need for the guide you are reading now! So, if you’re short on time, just remember FindLaw (and in this case, FindLaw’s labor law resources).
Labor Law Resources at Law Journal EXTRA! (and HERE also)
Law Journal EXTRA’s collection of labor law resources is easily as impressive as FindLaw’s — worthy of a top spot among your labor law bookmarks. Before going further, I’d like to clear up a bit of confusion. You may wonder why there are two links for LJX’s labor law resources (above). The first link is to a giant list of labor and employment law links. The second (“here also”) link will lead you to much of the same material, but it’s to a page that simply lists four Labor & Employment law categories — you can surf from there. Surfing from both URL’s, it was easier for me to find various labor and employment law materials from each page, so I’ve listed them both. I think both will be helpful to you.
News is what LJX excels at — don’t miss their Employment and Labor Law News page. The Statutes/Treaties section lists links to U.S. primary law materials related to labor and employment. However, there are no links to treaties — this must be a generic heading that they use throughout their (tremendous) site. Unlike the Laws and Government Documents labor law section of FindLaw, LJX’s list includes some links to state labor law resources in addition to federal material.
The Government Agencies section lists what you would expect: links to U.S. government agency Web sites of interest to the labor law researcher. This list includes links to some state agency Web sites as well. The Related Links section is a selective list of miscellaneous labor law resources on the Internet.
There are some labor law resources at LJX that may be particularly useful, and you may not run across them with a quick surf of their labor law sections, so be sure to take a look at:
and for fun…
The Top 10 Wacky Employment Cases of 1997
(I have to admit, #1 made me laugh out loud.)
The Hieros Gamos guide is a respectable list of labor law related resources generally, but it is particularly strong with regard to its links to international labor law materials — so if you’re looking for international materials, go to HG first. This site also has an excellent list of labor law related electronic mailing lists.
A unique feature worth pointing out is HG’s link to the Excite NewsTracker service. Clicking on the link “HG Employment Law News” at the top of the page takes you to recent labor law news items provided by Excite’s NewsTracker service.
This list of labor law related links is nowhere near as comprehensive as the other sites previously mentioned. However, the list is so “clean” and well-organized that I had to include it here. The focus is U.S. primary labor law material, and at the top of the page there is an excellent overview of labor law generally.
Finally, remember that none of the the labor and employment law “mega” pages is the first and last place to go for all your research needs in this area. Rarely, if ever, is there one complete compilation of Internet resources on any subject. Be sure to check more than one site if you cannot find something at one or two of the “mega” sites.
OTHER LABOR LAW MEGA PAGES WORTHY OF A VISIT
Aside from general information about the National Labor Relations Board, you’ll find summaries of recent NLRB decisions at this site in addition to the actual NLRB decisions. Decisions are posted from July, 1996 to the present. They are available in Adobe PDF or plain text format, and they are both browsable and searchable.
Ross Runkel is a professor at the Willamette University College of Law, and he has put together a really outstanding Web site for labor and employment law. Be sure to check out his “unofficial” NLRB and EEOC Web pages, which provide links to most of the resources at the official pages, as well as to other resources. He also has extensive pages devoted to recent developments in labor law, employment law, employment discrimination, and labor arbitration.
Labor law practitioners will find his free e-mail services particularly useful. You may sign up for periodic updates on recent developments in labor and employment law, and for electronic mailings of NLRB staff summaries of NLRB decisions.
Finally, if you’re interested in U.S. Supreme Court decisions regarding labor and employment law, Professor Runkel has a page listing decisions in 1997 and 1998, as well as a list of labor and employment law cases currently on the Supreme Court’s docket. He provides summaries of these cases, and for most decisions, links to the full-text opinions, too.
It may not appear so at first glance, but there is a wealth of material available at this site. The publications section provides access to many conference papers and committee reports, mostly in WordPerfect format.
This site is not specifically devoted to labor law — it is designed for labor issues generally, with a focus on workers’ rights. Still, it is a site no labor law researcher should be unaware of, and it is particularly good for news and current issues.
WorkNet@ILR(Cornell’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations)
Institute of Industrial Relations(University of California, Berkeley)
The information at this site is similar to what you will find at Cornell’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations. Be sure to see the publications section of the site.
Need statistics regarding the labor market? This is the place to start.
Also, don’t miss the Office of Administrative Law Judges Law Library section of this site. It contains a wealth of information, including selected full-text labor law decisions.
This site provides overviews of basic labor and employment law issues. It’s an excellent resource for someone new to this field of law.
This is not a comprehensive list. For the closest thing to a comprehensive list, see the labor and employment law mega pages listed previously. This list is provided to give you an idea of the variety of labor and employment related resources that are available.
- Employment News (from Arent Fox)
- Venable’s Workplace Labor Update
- Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA)
- Federal Labor Relations Authority Decisions
- Hale & Dorr Labor and Employment Bulletin
- Employment and Benefits Law Focus (Fredrikson & Byron)
- Wisconsin Labor & Industry Review Commission (with searchable decisions)
- Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board Decisions
- Employment Law Briefs (Schmeltzer. Aptaker & Shepard)
- Labor and Employment Law Update – Jan. 1998 (Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison LLP)
- National Labor Committee Home Page
- International Labour Organization (ILO) Research Guide (by Charlotte Bynum)
- Workers of America
- ACLU Workplace Rights
- The Labor Policy Association
- LaborNet’s Labor Quotes Page
- Center for Labor Education and Research
- Employment Law Cites and Sites
- Labor Arbitration Rules of the American Arbitration Association
- Alternative Dispute Resolution — Labor & Employment
- A Short History of American Labor
Examples of Union Web Sites:
More Labor Union Web Sites Can Be Found At:
When doing labor or employment law research on the Internet, more often than not, you will want to start with one of the labor and employment law mega pages. The labor law listings at FindLaw and Law Journal EXTRA! are particularly good. However, remember that rarely, if ever, is there one complete Internet resource on any topic. If you do not find what you are looking for at one site, try a few more before giving up. Also, don’t forget about the standard Internet search utilities. New resources in labor law may become available that the mega sites have not yet listed on their pages. You may be able to find some of these with an Internet search engine or searchable directory.
Here’s a quick summary to help you find what you’re looking for quickly:
For an overview of labor law:
- The LII’s overview
- U.S. Employment Law summaries from the Labor Policy Association
- The explanations at the Nolo Web site
For current labor and employment law related news:
- Law Journal EXTRA! (Labor Law News) (and here)
- The HG link to NewsTracker (click the link at the top of the page)
(or your favorite law firm labor law newsletter — see the miscellaneous sites above)
For quick access to relevant U.S. primary law materials:
- FedLaw (labor section)
- Labor Law Materials from Cornell’s Legal Information Institute
- Tarlton Law Library Labor & Employment Law Listing
Finally, if you have any questions or comments about this guide, I’d love to hear from you. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Copyright © 1998 Michael Dahn. All Rights Reserved.
From: Sandra Hyclak, Aug. 11, 1998
Just wanted to make you aware of a useful web site. The text of the Family and Medical Leave Act and FMLA Opinion Letters are available at the site listed below.