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Uniform Commercial Code (UCC): About UCC

This guide briefly defines what the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) is and tells where you can find the UCC Text, State UCC Statutes, UCC Case Law, Treatises & Texts, Journals, and Related Websites.

About

The Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) was drafted by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws. The UCC governs commercial transactions (sale of goods, commercial paper, bank deposits and collections, letters of credit, bulk transfers, warehouse receipts, bills of lading, investments securities, and secured transactions). The UCC is a model code, so it does not have legal effect in a jurisdiction unless UCC provisions are enacted by the individual state legislatures as statutes. The UCC has been adopted, with various modifications, by every state.

Coverage

The Uniform Commercial Code covers the following areas of commercial law:

Article 1 of the Code contains general provisions that are equally applicable to all subsequent articles. Articles 10 and 11 contain provisions for effective dates, repeals and transitional matters.

UCC Primary Sources

The primary sources for UCC research are:

  • the Code itself;
  • the Official Comments of the UCC Permanent Editorial Board Commentaries; and
  • judicial opinions (cases) which interpret and apply the Code, as enacted in a particular state.

Besides the text of the UCC, the Official Comments are generally the most authoritative sources in the construction of the Code sections. The PEB Commentary was introduced in 1990. It tries to resolve issues and ambiguities raised by the UCC and Official Comments, to resolve issues on which scholarly and judicial opinions differ, and to elaborate on the UCC’s role in relation to other statues. Some Commentary may be superseded by later Code Amendments. There is also a substantial body of case law that exists on the UCC. UCC litigation occurs in both federal and state courts, including bankruptcy courts for matters arising under Article 9. Some Articles are litigated less than others, so there is limited case law for certain Articles.

UCC Text Sources

Uniform Commercial Code Official Text

(Westlaw/WestlawNext UCC-Text)

Includes the UCC text with comments in its UCC-TEXT database. PEB commentaries through 2009 are available in the appendices of the database.

Uniform Commercial Code: Official Text With Comments

(Lexis UCC; UCC)

Provides access to the Official Text and Comments of the Uniform Commercial Code in its UCC database (UCC; UCC) for Articles 1, 7, and 9. All other Articles can be found in Article-specific LexisNexis databases by the short name UCC plus the number of the article (example: UCC; UCC2).

Uniform Laws Annotated

(Westlaw/WestlawNext ULA)

The most extensive collection of UCC text related documents. It contains the UCC Official Text, the Official Comments, PEB Commentaries, editorial section cross-references, state variations, citations to law review articles and digests of cases.

State UCC Statutes

The UCC is a model code. When states adopt the UCC, they may make revisions to the model code. To find the state adoptions of the UCC model code you can consult a variety of different sources, depending on your preference. The Uniform Laws Annotated in Westlaw/WestlawNext (ULA) contains a Table of Jurisdictions in the Ref & Annos section of each UCC article. You can also find state adoptions in the UCC Local Code Variations database in Westlaw/WestlawNext (UCC-VAR). State variations can be found on LexisNexis in the UCC State Variation Table (Lexis UCC; UCCTBL).

State variations can also be found for free at the Legal Information Institute. The website is arranged by Article number and contains links to state legislature websites containing the state enacted version of the UCC.

UCC Case Law

Uniform Commercial Code Reporting Service: Cases and Commentary and Uniform Commercial Code Case Digest

(Westlaw/WestlawNext UCC-CS)

This reporter series includes cases construing sections of the UCC and provides commentary about the cases. The set also includes tables indicating state variations of the UCC and the full text of PEB Commentaries. In UCC Cases and Administrative Material database (Westlaw/WestlawNext UCC-CS+), there is additional commentary, attorney general opinions, the opinions of county counsel, and the Federal Trade Commissions as well as other government agency documents in addition to duplicating the case law found in the UCC Cases database.

UCC Reporter – Digest

(Lexis UCC; UCCRPT)

The UCC resources on LexisNexis include Matthew Bender’s UCC Reporter Digest (UCC; UCCRPT). This is a digest of UCC decisions in all states, arranged by UCC section with links to the full-text cases.


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