HOME | NPL NEWS LIBRARY | CITIZEN TOOL BOX |

The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR)

(glossary of terms)

Definition / Background / Title / Chapter / Part / Section / Example / Update / Tip

 
Definition The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) is a codification of general and permanent rules (regulations) that have been previously published in the Federal Register. The CFR, which is compiled by the Office of the Federal Register, is divided into 50 titles, which cover broad areas subject to Federal regulation.
Background Many laws enacted by Congress require agencies to issue regulations. To fulfill this requirement, those regulations are first published in the Federal Register. Annually, regulations that have appeared in the Federal Register are compiled in the CFR.

First, an agency prepares a proposed regulation (or rule), which usually contains a preamble explaining many of the decisions in the proposed regulation. Next, the proposed rule is published in the Federal Register, and public comments are received during a specified time period (usually 90 days). Comments are then considered by the agency issuing the rule, and are responded to in a separate, supporting document that is published with the final regulation.

After publication in the Federal Register as a final rule, new regulations are then codified in the CFR. The 50 titles within the CFR are divided into chapters, which are then divided into parts, which are further divided into sections. The Office of the Federal Register assigns each agency a title, chapter, and part(s) in which to publish its regulation(s) in the CFR.


Title Each title represents a broad area subject to Federal regulation, and is identified by Arabic numerals (i.e., 1, 2, etc.). Titles are sometimes subdivided into subtitles, which are numbered consecutively in English capital letters (i.e., A, B, etc.). Subtitles are sometimes used to group chapters, or to separate department-wide regulations from regulations that pertain to the department's various units.
Chapter Titles and subtitles are divided into chapters, which are identified by Roman numerals (i.e., I, II, etc.). Each chapter is usually assigned to a single agency, and may cover the entire department or one of its units. Chapters are sometimes divided into subchapters to group related parts. Subchapters are distinguished by English capital letters (i.e., A, B, etc.).
Part Each part is identified by a number (i.e., 1, 2, etc.), and contains a unified body of regulations pertaining to a single function of the issuing agency, or devoted to a specific subject matter under the control of the issuing agency. Parts are usually assigned to chapters (i.e., Chapter I, Parts 1 through 199, etc.). Subparts, usually numbered in English capital letters (i.e., A, B, etc.), are sometimes used to group related sections within a part.
Section The section is the basic unit of the CFR, and ideally consists of a short, simple presentation of one topic. By convention, each section is identified by the part number (i.e., 120), followed by a period and the section number (i.e., 120). Sections of text are further divided into subsections, which are identified by lowercase English capital letters (i.e., a, b, etc.).
Example Title 23: Highways
Chapter I: Federal Highway Administration
Department: Transportation
Part 140: Reimbursement
Section 140.908: Materials and supplies.
a. Procurement.
b. Costs.
c. Materials recovered.
Update Each volume of the CFR is revised at least once each calendar year, and is issued as follows:
Title:Issued by:
1 through 16January 1
7 through 27April 1
28 through 41 July 1
42 through 50 October 1

Tip When generating a query in the Code of Federal Regulations database, if you are trying to locate a particular passage, separate the Title and Part by a colon. Do not include the abbreviation CFR if you are searching a particular passage within the document. Cited passages in the database are arranged with a colon, not with CFR. For example, if you are trying to locate "40 CFR 265" your search string should be "40:265".

Regulations and related information less than one year old may be found in the Federal Register, if it is not yet codified in the CFR.

EnviroText maintains about 60% of the complete CFR, including all environmental requirements. EnviroText currently includes all CFR sections in the table below. This information will be updated as revised sections are made available from the Government Printers Office.

You can also search the database with key words (i.e., "Clean Air Act" Radon). This search will retrieve sections of the Clean Air Act that contain the word "Radon." Words such as "and," "or," or "not" are not needed when wording a query because they will be removed by the search engine. The phrase, "Clean Air Act," is enclosed in quotations to retrieve only that particular Act. If the phrase was not enclosed in quotations, the query would retrieve documents that contained any combination of the words "clean," "air" or "act."

 

Title Sections Last Update to EnviroText
7 - Agriculture 400-699 01-01-94
10 - Energy 0-399
500-end
01-01-94
01-01-94
12 - Banks and Banking 300-499
600-end
01-01-94
01-01-95
14 - Aeronautics and Space 1200-end 01-01-94
15 - Commerce and Foreign Trade 0-299
800-end
01-01-94
01-01-94
16 - Commercial Practices 1000-end 01-01-94
17 - Commodity and Security Exchanges 200-239 04-01-94
18 - Conservation of Power and Water Resources 1-149
150-279
280-end
04-01-95*
04-01-94
04-01-95*
19 - Custom Duties all 04-01-95*
21 - Food and Drugs 0-169
170-199
04-01-94
04-01-95*
22 - Foreign Relations 0-299 04-01-94
23 - Highways all 04-01-94
24 - Housing and Urban Development 0-199 04-01-94
25 - Indians all 04-01-94
28 - Judicial Administration all 07-01-94
29 - Labor all 07-01-94
30 - Mineral Resources all 07-01-94
32 - National Defense 1-190
191-399
630-699
700-end
07-01-94
07-01-93
07-01-92
07-01-94
33 - Navigation and Navigable Waterways 200-end 07-01-94
36 - Parks, Forests, and Public Property 1-199
200-end
7-01-93
07-01-94
38 - Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief 0-17
18-end
07-01-93
09-01-92
39 - Postal Service all 07-01-94
40 - Protection of Environment 1-51
52-60
61-80
81-85
86-99
100-149
150-299
300-424
425-699
700-789
790-end
07-01-93
07-01-94
07-01-93
07-01-94
07-01-92
07-01-94
07-01-93
07-01-94
07-01-92
07-01-93
07-01-94
43 - Public Lands: Interior 0-999 10-01-94*
44 - Emergency Management and Assistance all 10-01-94*
45 - Public Welfare 500-1199 10-01-94*
46 - Shipping 500-end 10-01-94*
47 - Telecommunications 0-19 10-01-94*
48 - Federal Acquisitions Regulations System (FARS) 1-99
201-299
301-670
701-1452
1501-2852
2901-9904
10-01-94
10-01-94
10-01-94
10-01-94*
10-01-94*
10-01-94

Go to the Top

HOME | NPL NEWS LIBRARY | CITIZEN TOOL BOX |