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Federal Regulations: FR vs CFR

How the FR and CFR Relate to Each Other

The Federal Register is the chronological publication of proposed regulations, final regulations, and related materials. The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) is a subject arrangement of regulations. A regulation will be published first in the Federal Register and will later be included in the appropriate volume of the CFR.

Like Congressional legislative history, the regulatory history recorded in the Federal Register can be invaluable to researchers interested in the intent of lawmakers and the purpose of regulations.

Federal Register Code of Federal Regulations
  • Notices of proposed rulemaking
  • Proposed new rules and regulations
  • Rationale, statutory basis, and goals of proposed rules and regulations
  • Final Rules
  • Changes to existing rules
  • Notices of meetings and adjudicatory proceedings
  • Presidential documents (Executive orders, proclamations, administrative orders, etc.)
  • Final Rules

Federal Register

Publication Schedule and Contents

Published every weekday, except on federal holidays.

Each daily issue of the printed Federal Register is organized into four categories:

  • Presidential Documents (executive orders and proclamations)
  • Rules and Regulations (including policy statements and interpretations of rules by federal agencies)
  • Proposed Rules (including petitions to agencies from the public)
  • Notices (such as scheduled hearings and meetings open to the public and grant applications)

Where to Find

The Federal Register is available in several different places, in both microform and electronic format. 

Additional Information

Code of Federal Regulations

Publication Schedule and Contents

The Code of Federal Regulations is the annual codification of all the general and permanent rules published in the Federal Register, arranged by subject.

The CFR is divided into 50 titles, and those 50 titles are split into four sections. Each of those sections is updated once a year according to the following schedule:

  • Titles 1–16 are updated as of January 1
  • Titles 17–27 are updated as of April 1
  • Titles 28–41 are updated as of July 1
  • Titles 42–50 are updated as of October 1

Where to Find

The Code of Federal Regulations consists of primary Federal law. As such, it is accessible in several locations, in both electronic and print format.