Halsbury's Laws of Australia
Getting the most out of one of Australia's richest sources of legal information
What is Halsbury's Laws of Australia?
Halsbury's provides an expert overview of almost every area of law in Australia. It is a useful starting point when you to learn about an area of law you are unfamiliar with. It will provide clear and concise answers to the questions you are asking, and then point you in the direction of relevant primary materials if you require them.
89 different subject areas, from Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islanders, to Worker's Compensation, are covered. The hard copy version has 35 volumes, and weighs roughly the same as two adults.
A look at a sample entry
How do I search Halsbury's?
Halsbury's is best searched from the front page, in the Quick Find section. This gives you the opportunity to include other publications in your results as well.
Enter your search terms into "Commentary by keyword(s)". "All commentary" is a thorough, exhaustive search, whilst "Headings only" will give you fewer, more specfic results.
Using the Table of Contents or Index
Another way of approaching Halsbury's is via the table of contents or index, called 'browsing' on LexisNexis AU. This approach is especially useful when a search is failing to provide you with the answers you need. Halsbury's can be browsed by clicking on the"Browse" link next to it under My Sources on the front page. If it is not there, you can click on the "Commentary" link in the beige toolbar, and then click on "Browse" on the left hand side.
How to correctly refer to the various parts of Halbury's?
One of the easiest ways to sound like you know what you're doing with Halsbury's is to know how to refer to each part of Halsbury's! So here we go: each of the 89 subject areas in Halsbury's is referred to as a 'title'. Most titles consist of multiple guidecards.
The content is then divided into chapters, and then parts. The image below may help.
Additional Halsbury's features
The following provide ways of directly accessing parts of Halbury's without having to search. They can be access in 'browse' view (where you access the table of contents or index), using the steps outlined above.
Words & Phrases: Find legal definitions of words and phrases
- Table of Cases: Find commentary by case name
- Table of Statutes: Find commentary by act name