Law Library overview

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The Law Library provides a professional legal collection for judges, prosecutors, other lawyers, and county and state officials in accordance with RCW 27.24. This collection is open to the public any time the library is open, and about 90 percent of our questions come from non-attorneys.

Library information brochure

Reference help

Librarians are available to help you find relevant materials, and show you how to use library resources.

Research materials

The library has both print and online resources that you can use while you are in the library:

  • Laws: State and federal statutes, and city and county codes.
  • Court Rules: Federal, state, and local court rules.
  • Cases: State and federal appellate court opinions along with finding aids to help you find appropriate cases.
  • Legal Practice Guides: Washington Practice, Deskbooks, and other materials that can help you understand the law.
  • Online databases: Both Lexis and Westlaw including Washington-specific materials, all cases and statutes nationally, forms and examples, and more.

Online catalog

Most of the library’s collection is available to search by author or title in the online catalog. Library materials are for research purposes so need to be used in the library.

Computers

The library has two computers that can be used for legal research. A librarian can help you learn how to conduct a search. Time limits apply. Printing is available for 25 cents per page.

Copiers

There are two photocopiers in the library that you can use. Copies are 15 cents per page, and the copiers accept cash or credit/debit cards.

Legal forms

The library has fill-in-the-blank style forms for general civil lawsuits in subject areas such as debt collection, adoption, family law, real property, and guardianship.

The library also has the mandatory court forms for divorce, parentage, relocation, visitation, modification, and third-party custody. See the court forms page for more information.

Many forms are specific to Washington, but there are also national form book sets or example forms that can be adapted to other situations.

Self-help form kits

The library sells self-help kits with forms and instructions on several different topics including eviction, garnishment, gun rights restoration, contractor's bond claim, transfer on death deed, starting a civil lawsuit, small estate affidavit, and probate with or without a will. A sealed name change kit is available at no charge.

Form kits can be purchased with cash or credit/debit card. Kit prices vary. See the self-help form kits page for more information.

Limitations

The information provided by the library is not intended to substitute for legal or professional advice. You should consult with a lawyer about how information you find may or may not apply to your unique situation.

Law librarians are prohibited by law from offering legal advice or opinions on legal issues.

Watch the CVTV video about the library