NY State Laws

New York Consolidated Laws

A comprehensive on-line digest of NY's criminal code


Laws of New York

This site contains the full online searchable text of the Alcoholic Beverage Control Law, the Criminal Procedure Law, the Penal Law and the Vehicle and Traffic Law for the State of New York. Also the U.S. Constitution, NY Civil Rights Law, Family Court Act and selected articles from the NY Navigation Law.

NYS Law Search

Website F.A.Q.'s | Search Tips | Spelling Hints

♦ Where should I start?
There are 4 different New York State criminal codes listed on this website.
· Penal Law - Criminal Offenses
· Criminal Procedure Law - Court Proceedings
· Vehicle and Traffic Law - Driving Rules and Vehicle Regulations
· Alcoholic Beverage Control Law - Rules regarding beer, cider, liquor and wine
    SEARCH QUESTIONS
♦ Can I abbreviate words in my search?
· Yes you can but it is NOT recommended. Your search results will not be complete or may return no records. The criminal code has very few, if any, abbreviations. Try using a wildcard search, for example: misd* for misdemeanor or hara* for harassment. Take a look at some common spelling hints.
♦ Is this search engine like 'google'?
· No, not even close. Can you ask questions like, "If I get a ticket for ..." or "What if my friend has weed on him while in my car, can I be arrested?" Questions like that need to be answered by an attorney.
The search engine on this website is only an index of words that are located in the criminal code. When the criminal code is updated we need to re-index the search engine, this is done manually.
♦ Should I include the word 'attempt' or '110' in my search?
· No, it is not recommended to include anything but the section number you are searching for. Example, if you are searching for ATTEMPTED ASSAULT, in the Penal Law, just enter 'assault' or the section number '120' in the search box.
♦ Should I include the words 'illegal' or 'unlawful' in my search?
· No, it is not recommended to include those phrases in your search. Most things here are 'illegal' or 'unlawful'.
♦ Should I include the words 'article', 'chapter' or 'section' in my search?
· No, it is not recommended to include anything but the section number you are searching for. Example, if you are searching for article 120 in the Penal Law, just enter '120' in the search box.
♦ Should I include a sub-section number or letter in my search?
· It's recommended you DO NOT include sub-sections in your search. Example, if you are searching for Aggravated Vehicular Assault, section 120.04-a sub 1, your search query should be '120'. To produce results with the exact article, section and sub-section your search query would need to be in the exact same format as stated in the criminal code. Example, your search query would have to be: '120.04-a'
♦ Wildcard searches
· You can use wildcard characters '*' and '?' in your search terms to search for multiple words and return larger set of results. An asterisk character ('*') in a search term represents any number of characters, while a question mark ('?') represents any single character.
· This allows you to perform advanced searches such as "crime*" which would return all pages containing words beginning with "crime". Similarly, "c???e" would return all pages containing five letter words beginning with 'c' and ending with 'e'. Also, "*car*" would be a search for any words containing the word "car".
♦ Exact phrase searches
· An exact phrase search returns results where the phrase of words are found, in the same order that they are specified. For example, an exact phrase search for the words "police officer" would only return results where the phrase 'police officer' appears. It would not return pages where the words 'police' and 'officer' are found separately, or in a different order such as, 'officer police'.
· To specify an exact phrase search term, you need to enclose the words that form the phrase using double quotation marks. You can also combine the use of exact phrase searches with normal search terms and wildcard search terms within a single search query (eg. "police officer" employ*). Note however, that wildcards within exact phrases (eg. "police off*") are not supported.
    WHAT'S ON THE WEBSITE QUESTIONS
♦ Are there Police policy and procedures here?
· No. There are no local department policy or procedures located on this site. Questions as: 'Where is my car located after it was towed?' or 'Where do I go to court for this ticket?' need to be answered by the local agency.
♦ Are your 'Miranda' Rights located here?
· No. This site contains the criminal code for the State of New York. Searching for 'miranda', '5th amendment', 'right to lawyer', 'remain silent' or similar terms will not provide any results. In 1966, the U.S. Supreme Court decided the case of Miranda v. Arizona, declaring that whenever a person is taken into police custody, before being questioned he or she must be told of the Fifth Amendment right not to make any self-incriminating statements.
- You have the right to remain silent.
- Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law.
- You have the right to an attorney.
- If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed for you.
♦ Are there 'court decisions' here?
· No. This site contains the criminal code for the State of New York. It contains the ABC Law, the Penal Law, the Criminal Procedure Law and the Vehicle and Traffic Law. Searching for court rulings, 'nyc permits', 'homeland security', 'case law', 'people vs' or similar terms will not provide any results.
♦ Are there any local City, Town or Village ordinances here?
· No. This site contains the criminal code for the State of New York. It contains the ABC Law, the Penal Law, the Criminal Procedure Law and the Vehicle and Traffic Law. Searching for NYC codes or rules and regulations or similar items will not provide any results.
    SEARCH RESULT QUESTIONS
♦ No results are returned from my search?
· Are you searching the right criminal code? Example, if you are searching for DWI in the Penal Law or Criminal Procedure Law your results will be limited. DWI, Driving While Intoxicated, is an offense listed in the Vehicle and Traffic Code. See next FAQ for additional tips.
· Possible spelling issue? Try a wildcard search. Example: 'misd*' for 'MISDEMEANOR', 'larc*' for 'LARCENY', 'tres*' for 'TRESPASS', 'poss*' for 'POSSESSION', 'burg*' for 'BURGLARY', 'hara*' for 'HARASSMENT'.
♦ My search results are limited or not what I'm looking for.
· Try searching all the laws as recommended above. Then change 'Match All Search Words' to 'Match Any Search Words' (details listed below). Use wildcard characters to expand your search results (details listed below). Example, enter 'mari*' if you are searching for offenses relating to 'marihuana'. Note, in the examples listed here do not include the single quote.
· Review popular search terms for the NY Penal Law , NY Criminal Procedure Law and the NY Vehicle and Traffic Law.
♦ Match ANY search word (Boolean OR)
· Search for pages which contain AT LEAST ONE of the given search terms. The results will be sorted in order of the number of terms matched, and the determined relevancy score. Click the "match any search word" radio button to enable this search option.
♦ Match ALL search word (Boolean AND)
· Search for pages which contain ALL of the given search terms. The results will be sorted in order of the number of terms matched, and the determined relevancy score. Click the "match all search word" radio button to enable this search option.