Public Patron Services

Library Policies
Access, Services and Use of the Law Library for the General Public
Copying and Photoduplicating Services
Use of Cell Phones, Laptops, Scanners and Cameras

Legal Resources
Legal Aid
Legal Line
University of Hawaiʻi Elder Law Program (UHELP)
Websites & Self-Help Guides

Access, Services and Use of the Law Library for the General Public

The Law Library is open to the public for legal research purposes only. Public visitors are invited to use our legal databases for research and to consult with a Reference Librarian about their research.

To promote the mission of the Law Library, access and use by those not enrolled as law students is limited. Public visitors must sign the register and must limit their visits to the lobby area, except to retrieve shelved books or to use the bathrooms. Maps of the Law Library can be found in the information stand located in the Hawaii collection, or you may ask for one at the circulation desk.

Loitering, interrupting students or staff members, or use of the Law Library for purposes unrelated to conducting legal research is not permitted. Any person who interferes with our educational mission or disregards these use policies will be asked to leave.

Our services include:

  • identifying/recommending relevant print and Web resources
  • advice on legal and legislative research strategies
  • help using the Voyager online catalog and PRIMO discovery tool
  • referrals to legal assistance organizations

The Law Library staff are not permitted to:

  • give legal advice
  • interpret or analyze the meaning of any law or legal document
  • recommend a lawyer
  • read a section of a law, case, definition or book over the phone or to patrons in the Law Library
  • help you fill out forms
  • compile bibliographies or legislative histories
  • complete student or work assignments
  • provide monetary change


The Library has public access computers which can be printed from. Printing costs ten cents per page.  We accept cash only and do not give change.

You may reserve a computer for 30 minute sessions.  You may not sign up for successive 30 minute session if others are waiting for a computer station.  These computers may be used for research purposes only.  Patrons may access personal email accounts in connection with their research while at the Library.  These terminals provide access to the Library catalog, various legal and general databases, and the Internet.  These computers do not have any word processing capabilities or audio capabilities.

Recreational use of the Library’s public Internet workstations is prohibited.  Persons using public Internet workstations solely for recreational purposes may be asked to leave the premises.

Patrons may bring flash drives to copy files on public computers.

Copying and Photoduplicating Services

The Law Library has one Xerox copier. Printing is ten cents per page, cash only. The Xerox copier takes one dollar bills, nickels, dimes, and quarters. The Law Library does not give change. The Library of Congress Photoduplication Service provides copies from the Law Library collection for a fee. Patrons must supply specific citations (title, author, number of pages) in order for material to be copied. For more information, visit the Photoduplication Service page.

Use of Cell Phones, Laptops, Scanners and Cameras

Use of cell phones in the Law Library is prohibited. Hand held scanners are allowed and patrons may use cameras without flash attachments. Patrons may use laptop computers or other portable personal computers in the Law Library.

Attorney Referral Resources

The Library Faculty and Staff cannot recommend an attorney.

Referral List of Legal Service Organizations 2014-2015 .pdf

Hawaiʻi State Bar Association Lawyer Referral and Information Service
(808) 537-9140

Legal Aid

If you have been charged with a criminal offense and cannot afford an attorney, you have the right to an attorney free of charge. For more information, contact the Office of the Public Defender at (808) 586-2200.

If your case is a non-criminal matter, it is called a civil case. You may qualify for legal assistance in a civil case. For more information, contact the Legal Aid Society of Hawaiʻi at (808) 536-4302 for Oahu, or 1-800-499-4302 for neighbor islands.

Legal Line

Volunteer attorneys available to provide legal information and referrals Wednesday evenings from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Call (808) 537-1868.

Volunteer Legal Services Hawaiʻi
(808) 528-7046 for Oahu, or 1-800-839-5200 from Neighbor Islands
Provides free or low-cost legal help to individuals and non-profit organizations. This organization also conducts free legal clinics on divorce, bankruptcy, tax, and other topics.

University of Hawaiʻi Elder Law Program (UHELP)

University of Hawaiʻi Elder Law Program (UHELP)
UHELP operates throughout the calendar year and provides basic legal assistance, advice and information on problems involving public entitlements, guardianship and alternatives to guardianship, housing, landlord-tenant, elder abuse, age discrimination, pension and retirement problems, planning for incapacity and death, consumer protection, medical treatment, long-term-care insurance and family law. UHELP is not permitted to assist with business or criminal law matters or with personal injury or other fee-generating cases. You may qualify for services if you are 60 years or older and are socially or economically needy or if you are a caregiver of an older person and need legal assistance on behalf of the older person. Contact 808-956-6544.

Websites & Self-Help Guides


Hawai’i Criminal Justice Data Center – Fee-based service provided by the Hawai’i Criminal Justice Center. The Center will search an individual’s criminal history record for a $14 fee.

Hawai’i Judiciary Self-Help Center – Court of Hawai’i Forms, Divorce, Small Claims, Landlord-Tenant Claims, Regular Claims, Traffic Cases, Protective Orders, Juvenile Proceedings, Tips on Going to Court, Courtroom Information, Ex Parte Contact

Divorce Law in Hawai’i – Attend free informational seminars sponsored by the Family Court of the First Circuit Court. Presentations include an overview of custody and visitation, child support, property division and alimony.

Hawai’i Legal Aid – Offers self-help materials on a number of legal topics. Some topics include legal forms. Topics include: Consumers, Education, Family Law (Divorce and Child Custody), Juvenile Law, Health, Housing, Civil Rights, Immigration, Wills, Government Benefits, Seniors, Employment Law, and Tax.

LawHelp Hawaii – List of legal topics with online resources including general information, your legal rights, the law and the courts, legal forms and more.

Hawaii Legal Services Portal – The state’s first comprehensive legal services portal to direct people needing civil legal help to the most appropriate organizations and resources.

Hawai’i Legislative Reference Bureau Legal Guides

Hawai’i Practice Manuals – A listing of Hawai’i Legal Practice Manuals, published for Hawai’i Lawyers by the National Business Institute. The Law Library has many of these titles in our collection, as does the Hawai’i Supreme Court Library located in Downtown Honolulu.

Hawai’i Supreme Court Law Library – Subject Guides include Child Support, Hawai‘i, Administrative Decisions and Opinions, Hawai‘i Counties Rules and Regulations, Hawai‘i Legislative History and Intent, Hawai‘i Public Information, How to Read a Legal Citation, Landlord-Tenant Code, Legal Abbreviations, Legal Research, Legal Resources for Court Interpreters, Motor Vehicle Law, Sources of Primary Law

Researching How to Write Your Own Will, a Pathfinder for Patrons Who Are Not Lawyers by Nancy Tucker and Roberta Woods, J.D.


Bankruptcy: U.S. Bankruptcy Court Information for Non-Lawyers

Google Scholar for Law  – Find legal articles and cases using the Google search engine

Lexis Web – Free search engine that provides access to free legal-oriented web content from such sites as legal blogs, news, advocacy organizations, think tanks, court websites and government websites. (Free searches during the beta offer.) – Immi helps immigrants in the U.S. understand their legal options. Our online screening tool, legal information, and referrals to nonprofit legal services organizations are always free to use. Immi was created by the Immigration Advocates Network and Pro Bono Net, two nonprofit organizations dedicated to increasing access to justice for low-income immigrants. – Nolo Press is the leading publisher of legal self-help materials. This website features the “Nolopedia” with free legal information on a variety of topics. Podcasts are also avaiable. The Law Library has many titles from Nolo Press. Use our Library Catalog and search “Nolo” to find these helpful books. These titles are also available on ebrary.

Perfecting Your Appeal – Guide to writing an appeal, provided by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. A 28-minute practice guide video is also available at this website.

Public Library of Law – Free resource for cases, statutes, regulations, court rules, constitutions. Free registration required to display cases.

Public.Resource.Org – Nonprofit organization providing free access to case law online, NTIS documents, congressional documents and hearings. – A free legal portal providing links to useful legal sites and searchable case law and docket databases.

Resources for Self-Represented Litigants – A list of helpful links compiled by the award-winning site This website is sponsored in part by the American Association of Law Libraries, and the National Center for State Courts.