Michigan Legislature Website Help

Contact Us

Need help with this website? Send a question to the developers using our Online Contact Form

Can't find what you're looking for? Contact the State Law Library at (517) 335-1480 or use the online form above to submit an email.

Filing Cabinet Help

Registered users can save searches and bookmarked sections of law to a personal filing cabinet for quick reference.

To save a search to the Filing Cabinet, click the link on the Search Results page that says "Save Search to Filing Cabinet". This will prompt you to optionally name the bookmark and select a folder to save it in.

To save a section of law to the Filing Cabinet, click the link on the MCL page that says "Add to Filing Cabinet". This will prompt you to optionally name the bookmark and select a folder to save it in.

Print Basket Help

The Print Basket allows registered users to create custon documents by combining diverse MCL sections into a single Virtual Document. This Virtual Document can be downloaded as an HTML or PDF file, or saved to the Filing Cabinet for quick reference. Virtual Documents saved in the Filing Cabinet will automatically reflect changes made to the MCL sections they contain.

To save a section to the Print Basket, click the link on the MCL page that says "Add to print basket".

To save multiple sections to the print basket, select one or more sections on the Search Results page and click the link that says "Add selected sections to print basket".

Search Help

There are many search bars on this site, but there are three main types of searches: Simple-Text, Full-Text, and Numeric. Some search bars, like the ones on the home page can process multiple types of searches.

Simple-Text Searches

Simple-Text searches are the simplest kind of searches: they will search for exactly what you type, including spaces and punctuation.

Full-Text Searches

Full-Text Searches are used to search for words or phrases in the text of Bills or MCL Sections. These types of searches are very powerful and have a number of advanced features.

Full-Text Search Operations

Full-Text Searches can use the following search operations:

A single word:

Two or more words, separated by AND, AND NOT, or OR:
birds AND mammals
birds AND NOT mammals
birds OR mammals

Complex search operations can be constructed using parentheses ():
(birds OR mammals) AND NOT hunting

Multi-word phrases must be inside quotation marks "":
"hunting license"
"chief of police"

Wildcards * allow you to search for word prefixes. To return results for policy, policies, police, and policing, you could search for:

Numeric Searches

This type of search is used to search for documents by their numbers, for example, Bill Numbers, MCL Section Numbers, MCL Chapter Numbers, or Journal Numbers. These searches can accept comma-separated lists of numbers as well as ranges. When searching for Bills or Resolutions, you can also include the bill prefix to specify what type of document you are looking for.

When searching for Joint Resolutions, please note that Joint Resolution letters are not case sensitive and can be treated like numbers.

When using the Constitution Search or MCL Advanced Search features, please note that Article Numbers and Division Numbers can use either Roman or Arabic Numerals. Roman Numerals are not case sensitive. iv is the same as IV or iV.

Example Searches

Bills / Resolutions
HB 4020
SR 15
Joint Resolutions
a-f, q-z, bb-gg
MCL Sections
2.1, 2.15, 2.18-2.44, 2.101
Articles or Divisions

Bill History Search

The Bill History Search allows you to search for specific words or phrases that may occur in the bill history notes. This is escpecially useful to find bills with unusual activity. For example, you could search for vetoed or vote reconsidered.

MCL Statute Name Search

The MCL Statute Name Search is useful if you know the exact name of the statute that you are looking for. Please note that the punctuation must also be exactly correct for this search to function properly.


E.R.O. No. 2020-1
Act 1 of 1968
J.R. 6 of 1917
H.C.R. 38 of 1947
R.S. of 1846
Local Act 326 of 1883
Initiated Law 1 of 1976
Territorial Laws of 1833, Vol. III

Search by PA Affected

Search by PA Affected allows you to search for bills in the selected session that amend a specific Public Act. For example, if you wanted to find bills from the 2019-2020 session that amended the State School Aid Act of 1979 (Act 94 of 1979), you would select 2019-2020 from the drop-down menu at the top of the page and enter 94 and 1979 for PA Number and Year, respectively. Most Public Acts originate from Regular Sessions, so there is usually no need to change the PA Origin Session to anything else.