Researching Tribal Codes and Constitutions
- Researching American Indian tribal law (National Indian Law Library)
- A legal practitioner's guide to Indian and tribal law research. (Kunsch, Kelly. American Indian Law Journal Vol. 5, p. 102-138 (2016))
The NILL Tribal Law Gateway
Search the NILL collection of tribal law materials from our Tribal Law Gateway.
By topic or subject:
- Find provisions in 240+ tribal codes and 400+ constitutions by using our custom search (at right). It will search the full text of all codes and constitutions that NILL has available online as well as the table of contents of materials available in print or on the tribe's website. Watch a 3 minute video demo on how to do this.
By name of tribe:
- Browse the NILL Tribal Law Gateway Index (organized by tribe's name) to see what is available for each tribe.
- Search for codes in the NILL Catalog. Watch a 3 minute video demo on how to do this.
- Search for constitutions in the NILL Catalog. Watch a 3 minute video demo on how to do this.
Use our custom search (above) to search through the full-text of all tribal codes and constitutions published on our website. Watch a 3 minute video demo on how to do this.
Find materials about drafting codes and constitutions -- See our Tribal Law Drafting web page.
Other Online Resources
Indigenous Law Portal / Library of Congress.
Tribal Law Links / Tribal Court Clearinghouse.
Indian Law Portal / Arizona State University Law Library - Arizona focus, includes both tribal law and federal Indian law resources.
Native American Constitution and Law Digitization Project / University of Oklahoma - codes, constitutions, and other digital works, many of which are historical.
Constitutions of 440 Native American Tribes / Memory Hole 2 - includes 612 tribal constitution documents obtained as a result of a Freedom of Information Act requests. Most of the documents are historical in nature.
Indigenous Governance Database and Constitutions Resource Center (requires login) / Native Nations Institute - features educational and informational resources on tribal self-governance and tribal policy reform that foster Native nation building, promote tribal sovereignty, disseminate Indigenous data, encourage tribal leadership developmen,t support the development of capable governing institutions, and highlight sustainable economic and community development in Indian Country.Tribal Law Journal / University of New Mexico School of Law.
National Directory of Tribal Justice Systems / National American Indian Court Judges Association - National directory includes contact information for tribal justice systems.
Westlaw (fee-based) / More than two dozen tribal codes are available. See Westlaw Directory for more information.
Lexis (fee-based) / Selected Montana tribal codes are available. See Lexis Directory for more information.
Hein Online Indian Law Collection (fee-based) / W.S. Hein. The Indian Law Collection includes access to mostly historical copies of dozens of tribal codes and constitutions.
Tribal Criminal Law and Procedure / Carrie E. Garrow and Sarah Deer (2015). NILL Catalog record.
Introduction to Tribal Legal Studies / Justin B. Richland and Sarah Deer (2004). NILL Catalog record.
American Indian Tribal Law / Matthew Fletcher (2011). NILL Catalog record.
Tribal Constitution Handbook: a Practical Guide to Writing and Revising a Tribal Constitution (2007) . NILL Catalog Record.
Tribal Constitutions: a Handbook for BIA [Bureau of Indian Affairs] Personne l(1987). NILL Catalog Record.
American Indian Constitutional Reform and the Rebuilding of Native Nations (2006). NILL Catalog record.