"50 State Surveys" generally comprise a compilation of the laws on a certain subject or subjects across as many jurisdictions as have relevant law on the topic. As examples, a researcher may be asked to compile the various state laws regarding the regulation of the sale of securities; the various state statutes that comprise "castle doctrine" or "stand your ground" laws of permitted force used in self-defense; or comparative state approaches to enacting federal statutes and mandates such as medicaid benefits or "Megan's Law."
A "50 State Survey" on a legal topic--a survey of the laws on a topic that has already been completed and published--spares a researcher from having to examine the statutes and regulations of all 50 states individually. Such a compilation of laws on a topic will still require a researcher to examine the relevant statutes and to ensure that the listed legal provisions are still current. The resources listed in this Research Guide provide a number of useful resources for finding previously compiled 50 State Surveys, and in many cases will also provide researchers with links to the full-text of legal provisions, access to citator analysis of the cited statutes and/or regulations, and access to legislative services and administrative law material to allow necessary updating of cited material.