Legislative Drafting Guides

A little bit of inspiration while you draft

If you’re looking for a little inspiration for drafting your legislation, we’ve compiled a handy list of style guides from various jurisdictions around the country. We’ll keep this updated as things change. Thank you for notifying us of any mistakes or broken links here.

“Live Versions” are links to where the we last found the drafting guide. These live versions sometimes change, so we also provide a Permanent Link that should never break. After taking a look at this collection of resources, thank you for considering a donation to support our work.

House of Representatives

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02, 2016/09/14)

Senate

Not Available (2022/03/02)

Uniform Law Commission

“The Uniform Law Commission provides states with non-partisan, well conceived, and well drafted legislation that brings clarity and stability to critical areas of state statutory law.” – Uniform Law Commission

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/16, 2018/05/30)

Alabama

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23, 2016/10/06)

Alaska

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23, 2016/09/30)

Arizona

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23, 2016/06/23)

Arkansas

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23, 2015/10/04)

California

Not Available (2022/03/02)

Colorado

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23, 2016/11/11)

Connecticut

Basic Considerations in Drafting Legislation

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2016/05/31)

Regulations Drafting Manual

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23, 2016/05/31)

Delaware

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23)

District of Columbia

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02)

Florida

House

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23)

Senate (no longer published, last version linked below)

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23)

Georgia

Not Available (2022/03/02)

Hawaii

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23, 2016/04/22)

Idaho

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23, 2016/09/09)

Illinois

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23, 2016/06/28)

Indiana

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23)

Iowa

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23)

Kansas

Not Available (2022/03/02)

Kentucky

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23, 2016/06/05)

Louisiana

House

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23)

Maine

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23, 2015/09/10)

Maryland

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23)

Massachusetts

Live Version (PDF download)

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23, 2016/04/11)

Michigan

Not Available (2022/03/02)

Minnesota

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23) 

Mississippi

Not Available (2022/03/02)

Missouri

No Live Version Available (2022/02/23)

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2016/07/18)

Montana

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23, 2016/10/30)

Nebraska

Available to other state legislatures only (2022/03/02)

Nevada

Available to other state legislatures only (2022/03/02)

New Hampshire

Not Available (2022/03/02)

New Jersey

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/02/23) 

New Mexico

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02, 2016/11/11)

New York

Not Available (2022/03/02)

North Carolina

Not Available (2022/03/02)

North Dakota

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02, 2016/11/14)

Ohio

The legislative drafting manual is not available, but the Administrative Rule Drafting Manual is provided below.

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02, 2015/09/06)

Oklahoma

Available to other state legislatures only (2022/03/02)

Oregon

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02, 2016/08/27)

Pennsylvania

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02, 2016/09/08)

Rhode Island

Not Available (2022/03/02)

South Carolina

Not Available (2022/03/02)

South Dakota

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02, 2016/08/16)

Tennessee

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02)

Texas

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02)

Utah

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02, 2016/11/11)

Vermont

Not Available (2022/03/02)

Virginia

Not Available (2022/03/02)

Washington

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02, 2016/10/07)

West Virginia

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02, 2016/11/14)

Wisconsin

No Live Version Available (2022/03/02)

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2015/09/18)

Wyoming

Not Available (2022/03/02)

New York City, New York

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02)

Portland, Oregon

Portland provides a manual discussing the “preparation of ordinances, resolutions and reports for submission to the City Council.” The manual was last updated in February 2015. It is very detailed and contains information that is specific to Portland and drafting tips that are universally applicable. Live Version and the Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02, 2017/02/08).

Hong Kong

Live Version

Permanent Version Not Available

New Zealand

Live Version

Permanent Link (Retrieved 2022/03/02, 2016/10/12)

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