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Employee Benefits Research: Introduction


This research guide features a selection of print and online resources in the field of employee benefits law that are available to users of the Louis L. Biro Law Library. For each resource maintained in print, the title, author, edition, publisher, call number and location within the library are provided.  Many of these resources are available online through one of the library’s subscription databases, such as Westlaw, Lexis, Bloomberg, RIA or HeinOnline. If the resource is available through an online database, the guide often provides a link to the applicable database.

Online resources are generally available to current UIC Law students, faculty, and staff. To access Westlaw and Lexis databases, these users will need to use their assigned passwords.  For other databases such as BNA and RIA checkpoint, these users can access the resource using their UIC Law NetIDs and passwords.  UIC Law alumni and Illinois attorneys may use certain online resources, such as Westlaw, Bloomberg, Checkpoint and HeinOnline, at certain computer terminals within the library. Contact a reference librarian for more information.

This guide subdivides employee benefits law into several major components: employee benefits generally, ERISA (both primary and secondary sources), health care, compensation, retirement plans, Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), qualified domestic relations orders (QDROs) and litigation. Though this list is representative and is not intended to be exhaustive, we hope it assists our patrons in their research in this field.

Search Tips

Not every source related to employee benefits is listed in this guide. The following general tips can help you locate sources outside the scope of this guide.

1.     Subject Search. You can locate additional employee benefits sources by searching the library catalog under the subject headings commonly assigned to employee benefits materials (e.g., "Employee fringe benefits -- Law and legislation -- United States" and "Pension trusts -- Law and Legislation -- United States"). 

2.     Keyword Search. You can also execute broader and narrower searches for employee benefits sources by conducting keyword searches using terms common in this area of the law (e.g., "employee benefits" or "ERISA"). By combining keyword search terms using the AND connector, you will retrieve a narrower field of results (e.g., "employee benefits AND ERISA").

3.     Online Sources. A number of online resources available through the library provide access to employee benefits content, including Westlaw, Lexis and BNA. Links to many online databases are provided in this guide, and online resources are discussed generally under the Online Resources tab.

4.     CD-Roms. Some print sources include CD-Roms with additional content, often forms; the CD-Rom is typically available on reserve. Be sure to check the library catalog or ask a reference librarian for such information.

Request a Research Appointment

Need more help? Reference librarians are available to meet with students in one-on-one sessions (or in small groups) to discuss research strategies, recommend relevant resources or review specific topics of legal research. 

Contact with the subject you're researching and when you would like to meet. A librarian will get back to you to set up an appointment. You can also schedule an appointment on the library homepage by clicking "Schedule an Online Research Appointment." We ask that you request your appointment at least 2 days in advance, but remember that you can always stop by the reference desk for immediate help with a quick research question.