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European Union. A Basic Introduction to the Legal Resouces available at the Garbrecth Law Library


Legislation Official Journal of the European Communities (OJ) This is the primary, official source for legislation and other information about and from the EU. It is divided into several parts:

Legislation, or L Series: contains the regulations, directives,and other binding acts adopted by the Commission and Council. MICROFICHE KJE 908 O36 Communications

C Series (also titled Information and Notices): contains the nonbinding decisions and resolutions of the Institutions, as well as communications and notices from the Commission on a wide variety of topics. MICROFICHE KJE 908 O36

Debates of the European Parliament: reports in full the plenary sessions of the European Parliament. MICROFICHE KJE 908 O4 Index to the Official Journal (L and C sections):

This is a two part set. Volume one is the alphabetical index; the entries are arranged alphabetically by subject. Each entry gives a document number and OJ reference, and tells you the legal form of the document.

Volume two is the Methodological Table. It's arranged according to the type of document involved: regulation, court opinion, etc., and gives the OJ cite for each entry. MICROFICHE KJE 908 O36

Directory of Community Legislation in Force: Semi-annual index to legislation currently in force. Indexes legislation by subject, chronologically and alphabetically. MICROFICHE KJE 908 07 Commission of the European Community Documents (Also called COM Documents) These mimeographed documents contain proposals, opinions, reports and amendments issued by the Commission. Each piece is published individually, and contains an explanatory notice. These are indexed in the Documents Catalogue, which has a fairly comprehensive subject index. EU Periodicals


Reports of Cases Before the Court of Justice and the Court of First Instance: A standard case reporter, similar to those in the U.S. JX 1990 C6

European Court Reports: Reports of European Community Staff Cases: As the name suggests, this is limited to cases that involve the Commission staff. KJE 5932 A7 E93

Digest of Case-law Relating to the European Communities: This is theoretically divided into 4 series, A through D, though two of them (B and C) are only in the planning stages and have not been published yet. JX 1990 C6 A2

Series A covers the case law that is not covered in Section D, with the exception of staff cases which will be covered in Series C when it is published.

Series D covers case law that relates to jurisdiction and the enforcement of judgements.

Research Tools

Bulletin of the European Communities The official monthly record of events and policy actions for all of the Institutions. Gives a brief legislative history for all newly enacted legislation and legislation in progress. EU Periodicals (also available on the web at

Consolidated Texts Each issue pulls together different pieces of legislation on a specific point or issue, showing how and when legislation has been amended later. Although this is not an official legislative source, it can be useful as a finding tool. The set has a monthly index. EU periodicals (also available on the web at

EC 1992 and Beyond This is a good general guide to the institutions and documentation of the EU. Z 7165 E86 E17, at the reference desk.

Eurostat Catalogue A yearly publication which gives bibliographic references to Eurostat (statistical) publications. Covers both print and electronic sources. EU Periodicals

General Report on the Activities of the European Union The annual report given by the Commission to the Parliament; it gives a concise outline of the major actions, policy developments and activities for the year. HC 241.2 A17

Publications Catalogue This title indexes the monographs published by the various institutions of the Community and lists the current periodicals. Arranged by subject area. EU Periodicals

Recent Publications on the European Union Received by the Library Prepared by the Central Library of the Commission from its catalogue, this covers publications by and about the EU, including periodical articles. EU Periodicals


Several legal periodicals from the United States, such as the Fordham International Law Journal and the Boston University International Law Journal, frequently feature articles about the European Union. These are indexed on LegalTrac and in the Index to Foreign Legal Periodicals. The library carries most of them.

In addition to the US publications, the library also receives a number of periodicals from the EU. These are located in the EU periodical stacks, on the third floor of the Annex. Most of the EU periodicals fall into one of three categories: statistical information, current awareness items, or bibliographic references. There aren't any analytical, law review type publications within this material, and unfortunately there isn't an easy to use system of indexing available for them.