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Key Legal Databases

There are a number of databases available at Macquarie University Library for researching legal issues.  Throughout the Library Guides on this page you will become familiar with the main four databases that are commonly used and have a long history publishing legal research materials.

Key legal databases
WestlawAU logo Westlaw AU Includes the case citator FirstPoint, the encylopaedia Laws of Australia, as well as a range of law reports, unreported judgments, journals and commentary.
LexisNexisAU logo LexisNexis AU  Includes the case citator CaseBase, the encyclopaedia Halsbury's Laws of Australia, as well as a range of law reports, unreported judgments, journals and commentary.
CCH IntelliConnect Logo CCH IntelliConnect Includes a range of subject-specific law reports, journals, commentaries and newsletters.‚Äč
Austlii logo AustLII Includes an extensive collection of unreported judgments, legislation (including point-in-time NSW Acts), treaties, journals and law reform reports.

Legal resources online

The table below is a quick reference guide for finding different types of Australian legal resources online. Use the International Law guide to find International legal resources.

Type of information Where to access
Case Law - Published Law Reports
Case Law - Unreported Judgments
Case Law - Digests/Citators
Legislation - full-text
Legislation - Annotators
  • AustLII - Australian Treaties Library
Journal Articles
Forms & Precedents

Quick links for Students

Follow the links below for help on:

Quick links for Researchers

Use the links below for further assistance with your research

At Macquarie

Get involved in activities within the Law School and meet like-minded people.

Australia's Legal System

In Australia, there are two parts to the legal system:

  • Legislation - made by Parliament
  • Common Law (also known as Case Law or Judge-made law):
    • where a judge will interpret the legislation if it is unclear; or
    • if there is no legislation, make a decision based on prior cases (known as precedents).

These videos from the State Library of NSW explain the process of making laws.