lawlibrary Libraries

Library of Congress Posts Corona Virus Resource Guide

“This is intended as a guide to laws, regulations and executive actions in the United States, at both the federal and the state level, and in various countries with respect to the new coronavirus and its spread. We are also including links to Congressional Research Service (CRS) reports that provide information to Congress about the novel coronavirus. In addition, we provide links to relevant federal agency websites. We intend to update this guide on at least a weekly basis for the immediate future.”


Legal Publishers Respond with COVID-19 Resources

West Thomson Reuters:

COVID-19 Resource Center “As the Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to spread globally, our main objectives now are to support you and your businesses, and to navigate this complicated and ever-changing environment together with you. Rely on these free resources, created by our legal and tax experts, to assist you as you prepare and respond to issues.”

COVID-19 Toolkit “A toolkit to guide counsel working across jurisdictions through Practical Law’s global coronavirus, COVID-19, pandemics and business interruption content. It provides resources for use in the UK, US, China, Australia and Canada.”


Managing COVID-19 Webinar Series: Learn from expert legal industry panelists how to sustain workplace continuity, navigate new challenges, and deal with other important topics.

• Coronavirus Resource Kit: Get a complimentary Lexis Practice Advisor resource kit covering a wide range of topics across multiple practice areas, addressing emerging issues and offering guidance relating to coronavirus and the law.
• Coronavirus Content on Law360: Access a complimentary, dedicated coronavirus page with breaking news, in-depth features and expert analysis and commentary on topics relating to coronavirus and the law.
• Law360 Map of U.S. Court Closures

NCLC National Consumer Law Center:

“While coronavirus (COVID-19) is primarily creating a health emergency, it is also causing financial havoc for the most vulnerable American families. The National Consumer Law Center remains focused on advocating for consumers and their financial welfare, and helping you do the same. By offering free resources and discounts on new subscriptions, the Publications team hopes to help facilitate your advocacy on behalf of consumers.”

Surviving Debt: Expert Advice For Getting Out of Financial Trouble
As many Americans grapple with the fallout from this unprecedented health crisis, NCLC wants to remind you that our 50th anniversary edition of Surviving Debt is an invaluable resource for consumers and consumer advocates. We have made the digital edition of Surviving Debt free to all. Access it here.”

lawlibrary Maryland Law

Maryland Legislative Session 2020 – SINE DIE?

The 2020 Session of the Maryland Legislature ended early on March 18 at 5 p.m. due to the Coronaviris/Covid19 pandemic and may reconvene in May. Still, the legislature passed more than 650 bills during the shortened session.

Visit the website of the Maryland General Assembly to see what passed and what did not. Some helpful links follow:

Bills enacted

Bills passed by both chambers

Bills vetoed (includes veto overide information):


Law Library Service Available Remotely

Even though the courts are essentially closed, the law library is providing legal research assistance remotely. You can reach us at our regular number: 410-222-1387 or by email:

The Lawyer in the Library programs have been suspended for now. The programs scheduled in the Anne Arundel County Public Library branches are cancelled at least through May 2.

With the Family Law Self-Help Center closed, help can be found at the remote Maryland Court Self-Help Center by phone, 410-260-1392, or live chat,, Monday through Friday, from 8:30 am – 8:00 pm.

Hope that all will be back to normal on April 6, but check the court’s website for updated information concerning the opening of the court and availability of services:

lawlibrary Pro Bono Self Represented

AACPLL Self-Help Services: Lawyer in the Library

Ask A Lawyer in The Library is a Civil Non-Family Law Self-Help Program held in the law library every Wednesday of the month from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. (Sign up at 10:45 a.m. for lottery to determine time slots.) Participants can talk with a volunteer lawyer for up to 20 minutes about civil, non-family legal problem for free! No appointment is necessary. Just check-in at the law library’s information desk.

This program is also held off-site twice a month in the evening: at the Glen Burnie Regional Library on the the third Wednesday of the month and at the Eastport-Annapolis Neck Community Library on the last Tuesday of the month. The start time for these programs is 4:30 p.m. with sign up at 4:15 p.m. for lottery to determine time slots.

Please call to confirm dates as library availability for the program is affected by elections and holidays: 410-222-1387.

Issues that may be addressed include:

  • Debt and bankruptcy
  • Landlord/Tenant questions
  • Real estate
  • Employment and wage claim issues
  • Contracts, warranties and/or consumer disputes
  • Wills, estate planning, probate, living wills

Preparation for your session:

  • Write a list of specific questions for the attorney.
  • Bring any paperwork and information related to the case.
  • Organize any paperwork from most recent on the top to oldest at the bottom.
  • Identify all deadlines.
  • Prepare a timeline of the legal issue.

The attorney you meet with may not have expertise in the area of law you need. They will make every effort, through the resources in the library, to answer your questions correctly.

Family law issues are best addressed by the Family Law Self Help Center

The Lawyer in the Law Library Program is a limited legal advice service and should not be considered a substitute for representation. If you need an attorney to represent you contact the Anne Arundel Bar Association Lawyer Referral Service or call 410-222-6859. 

Sponsored by
The Anne Arundel Local Pro Bono Committee
and the
Maryland Volunteer Lawyers Service

Holiday lawlibrary

Law Library will be closed for the Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday

The Law Library and the Family Law Self-Help Center in the Anne Arundel County Circuit Court are closed today, January 20, 2020, in observance of the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. You can read a little about Martin Luther King, Jr. at America’s Library – the Library of Congress here.

The Law Library will reopen tomorrow, January 21, 2020.  A list of Court Holidays is available on the Circuit Court’s website at Except on Court Holidays, the Library is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

lawlibrary Self Represented

Open to the Public: How Law Libraries Are Serving Self-Represented Litigants Across the Country

Maryland Court Law Libraries serve a wide variety of customers from judges and attorneys to students and those dealing with a legal issue without an attorney. How law libraries across the country serve these self-represented litigants (SRLs) was the subject of a recent survey by the AALL GLL (Government Law Libraries SIS of the American Association of Law Libraries) and the SRLN Law Librarian’s Working Group through a research grant from LexisNexis.

For an introduction check out this video:

You can dig into the details of the survey with the Story Map. Law libraries serve the SRL through the collections, technology, reference, referrals and partnerships.

If you find the AACPLL on the map you will see that we fit within all the criteria for an intermediate law library:

  • Basic levels
  • Guides and Pathfinders
  • Law Library Website
  • Email (AskLawLibrarian)
  • Interpreter Services
  • Referral Systems/Triage
  • E-Filing
  • Limited English Language Resources
  • More Court Forms (Online forms with document assembly and guided interviews)
  • Public Librarian Partnerships (training opportunities for public librarians)
  • Partnerships with Others in the Legal Community
  • Self-Help Center in the Law Library or Lawyer in the Library Program
  • Support for External Self-Help Centers as Available

The Anne Arundel County Public Law Library would be excited to move to the advanced level, a library with a staff attorney to provide brief legal advice, but for now will continue to provide the best service that we can to all in need.


lawlibrary Libraries

40 Years! Things have changed since my first day in the law library.

When I started here in the Law Library, 40 years ago today, I was just starting the University of Maryland’s Master of Library Science program. My technology or equipment consisted of an electric typewriter, a rotary phone that didn’t even have a hold button and a copier.

I had a lot to learn. At that time, I saw mostly attorneys and law clerks using the law library as everything was in the books.

The 1980s library.

A lot has changed over the years. Now so much of the library’s collection is available online with Lexis and Westlaw. Close to 80% of the library’s reference questions come from non-attorneys. The library houses the Family Law Self-Help Center and provides a weekly “Ask a Lawyer in the Law Library” brief advice clinic for civil non-family matters.

The reference desk – 40 years later.

While much has changed in the way that we can access legal information, I can say that one constant is actually me, the law librarian able to assist with access to legal information no matter the format or who might be asking.

The “reading room” today.

Although, technically, I have been in the same position for 40 years, I have seen so much change that I can’t say that anything else is the same. I have enjoyed the challenges and opportunities that change can bring without having to leave. I am looking forward to the future and whatever it may bring.

Holiday lawlibrary

Law Library and Family Law Self-Help Center closed for the Thanksgiving Holiday

The Law Library, the Family Law Self Help Center,  and the Circuit Court for Anne Arundel County is closed today November 28, 2019 and tomorrow, November 29, 2019 for the Thanksgiving Holiday.  The Law Library will reopen on Monday, December 2, 2019.  A list of Court Holidays is available here. Except on Court Holidays, the Library is open Monday through Friday, from 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.

Read this article, Congress Establishes Thanksgiving, at the National Archives website to find out how Thanksgiving became a holiday.

lawlibrary Maryland Law

Worth a read: The Law of Impeachment – A digital exhibit from the Harris County Law Library

Wondering about the law of impeachment? Interested in the history and past impeachment proceedings? Or just want to be ready with the law for Thanksgiving table discussions?

The Harris County Law Library in Texas has put together a digital exhibit that includes a brief history, cites to the U.S. Constitution, and information on the most recent proceedings. It also includes discussion of Texas impeachment.

If interested in the Maryland law on impeachment see theMaryland Constitution Art. 2 § 7 Impeachment, Art. 3, § 26 Impeachment and Art. 4, § 4 Grounds and procedure for removal of judges.