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Criminal Law Resources
Criminal law is complex: finding the law itself is difficult and to understand the law is even more difficult. The Law Offices of Benjamin Zicherman firmly believes that everyone should have access to basic criminal justice resources and information. Knowledge is indeed power!
In this spirit, we provide the following links to Internet resources on Federal law, California law, and legal search engines as an example of our commitment to provide the best in criminal law resources.
Be aware: these laws and codes are only a basic foundation for understanding the Criminal Laws and the workings of the criminal justice system. Please contact our office today for a free consultation on your case, or any questions you may have regarding these resources.
The U.S. Codes are the basis for much of federal law. This link provides a keyword-searchable database of the U.S. codes.
Federal Legislation and Congressional Reports
Federal database of all federal legislation and congressional reports, searchable by date, keyword, or bill number.
Federal Rules of Evidence
The Federal Rules of Evidence govern what type of evidence is admissible at trial. The federal rules apply in federal charges in federal courts.
Much like the federal constitution which provides the basis for all law in the United States, the California Constitution provides the backbone for all California laws. This link provides full text of the California Constitution.
Lists all codified laws in California.
California Penal Code
This is the section of the California Code that deals specifically with criminal offenses. Sections are divided by type of crime.
California Rules of Evidence
Rules that detail the admissibility of evidence in California Courts.
California Vehicle Code (2010)
Information on vehicle registration, driver’s licenses, and moving violations. Includes information on penalties and fine payment.
Provides maps, addresses and phone numbers for all California courts.
California Court Forms
Online copies of forms to be filed in California courts.
California Court Criminal Forms
Forms specific to criminal charges.
U.S. Supreme Court
The United States is a common law country, which means that court decisions create law. The U.S. Supreme Court is the highest federal court. This link provides U.S. Supreme Court cases through the FindLaw search engine. You can search by case name, or by keyword.
The 9th Circuit is the federal jurisdiction that covers the State of California. This link is through the 9th Circuit homepage, and provides information on new and past decisions.
California Supreme Court and Appellate Courts
FindLaw search database for decisions by the California Supreme Court and the California Appeals Courts.
General Questions and Terms
Confused about what certain legal terms mean? Cornell Law school provides a data base with definitions of different criminal offenses and legal terms.