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American Indian Law & Culture

American Indian law refers primarily to federal law and encompasses the treaties, statutes, executive orders, court decisions, and administrative actions which define the status of the Indian tribes and their relationship to the federal government.

Indian Law vs. Tribal Law

"Indian Law" might be better termed "Federal Law about Indians."  It refers primarily to the body of law dealing with the status of Indian tribes and their relationship to the federal government.  This includes, among other things, treaties, statutes, cases, administrative actions, and executive orders.

Tribal law, by contrast, is the internal law that each tribe applies to its own affairs and members.  Tribal laws vary greatly, and may range from oral traditions to entire codes.

This guide provides information for researchers in the fields of Indian and Tribal law.

Research Guides

Resource and Practice Centers

These practice and resource centers are aggregations of multiple research sources in the area of Indian Law.  Searching within these collections will enable you to better find relevant information in the field of Indian Law.

Helpful Books