- Awards Season
- Big Stories
- Pop Culture
- Video Games
Get the Most Out of Bluebook Online with a Free Account
Bluebook Online is a powerful online resource for legal research and citation. With a free account, you can access a wealth of information and resources to help you get the most out of your research. Here are some tips on how to make the most of your free Bluebook Online account.
Find Easy-to-Use Tools
Bluebook Online offers a variety of tools to help you quickly and easily find the information you need. The search function allows you to quickly locate relevant documents, while the citation generator helps you create accurate citations for your sources. Additionally, the site provides an extensive library of sample documents and templates that can be used as starting points for your own research.
Stay Up-to-Date with News and Updates
Bluebook Online regularly publishes news and updates about legal developments, court decisions, and other topics related to legal research. By subscribing to their email list or RSS feed, you can stay informed about changes in the law that may affect your research. Additionally, Bluebook Online offers webinars and tutorials on various topics related to legal research and citation.
Take Advantage of Special Offers
Bluebook Online offers special discounts and promotions throughout the year. By taking advantage of these offers, you can save money on subscription fees or other services offered by Bluebook Online. Additionally, many universities offer discounted subscriptions for students who use Bluebook Online for their research needs.
With a free account, Bluebook Online provides an invaluable resource for legal researchers. By taking advantage of the tools, news updates, and special offers available through Bluebook Online, you can get the most out of your free account and maximize your research potential.
This text was generated using a large language model, and select text has been reviewed and moderated for purposes such as readability.
MORE FROM ASK.COM
Law - Legal Citation Guide
- Secondary Sources
- Government Publications
- International Law Sources
In-Text References & Footnotes
- Journal Abbreviations
- Law Report Abbreviations
Law Library at Allard Hall
The two most common forms of references in legal writing are in-text references and footnotes. The main difference between them is that in-text references are usually included in the text itself while footnotes are given at the bottom of the page.
Generally, in-text references are used for memoranda and facta while footnotes are used for other legal writing.
Include the full citation to the case immediately after the relevant text. If you plan to refer to this case later, provide the reader with a short form in brackets. This makes later references much more succinct.
Here is a sample passage, illustrating how to provide in-text references:
The leading case in B.C. on the general test for the existence of a partnership is that of Hayes v British Columbia Television Broadcasting System Ltd (1992), 74 BCLR (2d) 120 (CA) [ Hayes ]. In determining whether a partnership has formed, the meaning of the words “carrying on business in common with a view of profit” should be considered ( ibid ).
The parties must intend a partnership to form ( Sproule v McConnell ,  1 DLR 982 (Sask CA)). The analysis used to discern the intention of the parties is two-pronged. A court will first review the agreement between the parties, then will look to the conduct of the parties ( ibid) . Because there is no express contract in the present circumstances, a court would immediately turn to the second branch of the analysis, which was described as follows:
[It] requires the court to enquire into whether the conduct of the parties during the currency of their joint project constituted a partnership relationship notwithstanding their contrary intention and the provisions of their agreement ( Hayes at 123).
The parties in Hayes did not meet the “business in common with a view to profit” test. While the parties all expected to obtain something of value from the enterprise in that case, the Court observed that it was:
not in the view of either that what would be obtained would be the profit of the business being carried on in common. … Whether either party realized a profit turned upon that party’s costs and that party’s revenue from that party’s market area (at 126).
As cited in Hughes v Page , 1998 CarswellBC 216 (WL Can) (SC) [ Hughes ], it is the majority decision in Hayes which sets down the test used today in B.C. The emphasis placed on profit sharing in Hayes is not unique to that case. In B.C., see also Hughes and Jenks v McCrory ,  BCJ no 995 (QL) (SC).
Here is another sample, incorporating legislation and secondary sources, provided by Kim Nayyer, Librarian and Legal Research and Writing Instructor at the University of Victoria:
If this bill becomes law, the effect of the ninth item of the proposed new s 7.0.2(4) (“paragraph 9”) of the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act , RSO 1990, c E.9 will be to give the Lieutenant Governor in Council the power to fix prices of certain necessaries during a declared emergency. Although a constitutionality analysis of paragraph 9 must be comprehensive, it can encompass an evaluation of the power to fix prices.
The courts have considered price-fixing regimes with respect to matters within the province to fall under provincial jurisdiction pursuant to s 92(13) of the Constitution Act, 1867 (UK), 30 & 31 Victoria, c 3, as legislation in relation to property and civil rights within the province. Patrick Monahan, Constitutional Law , 2d ed (Toronto: Irwin Law, 2002) lists price regulation among fields that are subject to exclusive provincial jurisdiction, so long as there is no relation to the matters within s 91 (at 313).
This was confirmed in Home Oil Distributors v British Columbia (Attorney General) ,  SCR 444 (“ Home Oil ”). In Home Oil , the impugned legislation authorized the fixing of prices of coal or petroleum products from time to time. The legislation was held to be intra vires the province, even though it affected the activities of extra-provincial corporations doing business within the province.
Footnotes should be placed on the same page as their accompanying text. Footnote numbers are placed in superscript, usually at the end of the sentence. If you are referring to a word, place the footnote number directly after the word.
If you cite one source multiple times, use ibid or supra after the first citation rather than repeating the full citation.
Ibid is used when referring to the same source in the footnote immediately above . Ibid may be used after another ibid or after a supra .
Supra is used when referring to the same source in a footnote that is not immediately above .
Here is the first sample passage from the in-text references section above, illustrating how to provide the same references using footnotes.
The leading case in B.C. on the general test for the existence of a partnership is that of Hayes v British Columbia Television Broadcasting System Ltd . 1 In determining whether a partnership has formed, the meaning of the words “carrying on business in common with a view of profit” 2 should be considered.
The parties must intend a partnership to form. 3 The analysis used to discern the intention of the parties is two-pronged. A court will first review the agreement between the parties, then will look to the conduct of the parties. 4 Because there is no express contract in the present circumstances, a court would immediately turn to the second branch of the analysis, which was described as follows:
[It] requires the court to inquire into whether the conduct of the parties during the currency of their joint project constituted a partnership relationship notwithstanding their contrary intention and the provisions of their agreement. 5
The parties in Hayes did not meet the “business in common with a view to profit” test. While the parties all expected to obtain something of value from the enterprise in that case, the Court observed that it was
not in the view of either that what would be obtained would be the profit of the business being carried on in common. … Whether either party realized a profit turned upon that party’s costs and that party’s revenue from that party’s market area. 6
As cited in Hughes v Page , 7 it is the majority decision in Hayes which sets down the test used today in B.C. The emphasis placed on profit sharing in Hayes is not unique to that case. In B.C., see also Hughes and Jenks v McCrory . 8
` Hayes v British Columbia Television Broadcasting System Ltd (1992), 74 BCLR (2d) 120,  2 WWR 749 (CA) [Hayes].
2 Ibid .
3 Sproule v McConnell ,  1 DLR 982,  1 WWR 609 (Sask CA).
5 Hayes , supra note 1 at 12.
6 Hayes , supra note 1 at 18.
7 Hughes v Page (1998), 77 ACWS (3d) 432, 1998 CanLII 6580 (BCSC) [Hughes].
8 Jenks v McCrory , 1998 CanLII 4992 (BCSC).
- << Previous: International Law Sources
- Next: Journal Abbreviations >>
- Last Updated: Aug 15, 2022 8:27 AM
- URL: https://guides.library.ubc.ca/legalcitation
Legal Writing: Tools and Tips for formatting
- Table of Authorities
- Table of Contents
- Track Changes
- Legal Templates
- Insert Section Symbol
How to insert footnotes, footnotes for mac users.
- Useful Tools
Footnotes appear on the bottom of the page in which the sentence being cited appears. A number appears at the end of the sentence that corresponds with the citation at the bottom of the page.
- Footnotes and Endnotes This source offers information on what a footnote and an endnote is, how they differ, and what is included in a footnote and endnote.
- Chicago/Turabian Basics: Footnotes While this has a focus on Chicago Style footnotes, it includes information on what a footnote is and the differences between footnotes and endnotes.
Click where you want to reference to the footnote or endnote. On the References tab, select Insert Footnote or Insert Endnote.
Enter what you want in the footnote or endnote. Return to your place in the document by double-clicking the number or symbol at the beginning of the note.
Mac users should be able to follow the same directions above to insert footnotes and endnotes.
- << Previous: Insert Section Symbol
- Next: Useful Tools >>
- Last Updated: Feb 6, 2023 1:36 PM
- URL: https://libguides.law.illinois.edu/format
- Learning Modules
- 1.1 What is Uniform Legal Citation?
- 1.2 Content + Form = Function
- 1.3 Citing Legal Sources: General Rules
- 1.4 Citing Legal Sources: Footnotes
- 1.5 Secondary Source Citations
- 1.6 Legal Encyclopedia Citations
- 1.7 Periodical Abbreviations
- 1.8 Legal Periodical Citations
- 1.9 Government Document Citations: Non-parliamentary government documents
- 1.10 Legal Dictionary Citations
- 1.11 Bill Citations
- 1.12 Statute Citations
- 1.13 Federal Regulations
- 1.14 Provincial Regulations Citations
- 1.15 Case Citations
- 1.16 The Style of Cause
- 1.17 The Neutral Citation
- 1.18 The Core Citation or Printed Reporter
- 1.19 The Parallel Citation
- 1.20 Putting the Components of Case Citation Together
- Review and Conclusion
Legal Citations – Citing Legal Sources: Footnotes
Although in-text citations are fairly common in legal memos and factums, footnotes are the preferred method of citation used at law school .
There are two types of footnotes:
- Citation Footnotes: directly support the author's argument and point the reader to the source which is being quoted or referred to.
- Textual Footnotes: point the reader to peripheral material that is related to the subject, but not directly supporting the author's argument.
Generally speaking it is only appropriate to use footnotes under these circumstances in legal writing:
- at the first reference to a source;
- at every subsequent quotation from the source;
- at every subsequent reference or allusion to a particular passage in the source; and,
- to provide peripheral or parenthetical information , such as a quotation or brief description, in order to clarify an in-text proposition.
There are several rules governing the use of footnotes in legal writing.
EXAMPLE 1: Only superscripted numbers (i.e. no roman numerals or symbols) are used to signal a footnote. EXAMPLE 2: The full citation should be provided in the first footnote referring to a source.
There are also many other rules, such as:
- when to combine footnotes;
- how to include parenthetical information within a footnote; and,
- prior and subsequent references to a citation.
The only way to really get to know these rules is through practice!
If you would like to give us your feedback on the Principles of Legal Research website, you can reach us through our contact us page.
Principles of Legal Research © University of Ottawa – Brian Dickson Law Library, 2011
Referencing Guide: Footnotes
- AI: Guidance and Support for Students
OSCOLA is a Footnotes and Bibliography referencing system. This means all sources should be cited in a footnote, and appear in a Bibliography (see Bibliography page for more details).
When a source is used in the text, a footnote should be inserted, containing the footnote reference to the source. This will appear at the bottom of the page on which the source is mentioned.
Footnotes can be inserted on Word via the References tab, by selecting the ‘Insert Citation’ button. This will add a superscript number, which is linked to a footnote at the bottom of the same page. Footnotes should be inserted at the end of a quotation, or at the end of the point/information borrowed from the source, if you are paraphrasing. Insert the footnote after any punctuation.
A footnote will look like this:
In this example, the first footnote appears after a quotation. The second footnote appears after a paraphrased point.
Follow these rules when creating your footnote references.
- Author names should be formatted as First name Surname, e.g. Jill Poole
- End footnotes with a full stop.
- If citing more than one source to make a single point, include all sources used to make the point in one footnote. Separate the citations with semi-colons, and end the footnote with a full stop.
- Use page or paragraph numbers (pinpoints) when referring to a particular part of a source. If you are referring to the source as a whole, a pinpoint is not required.
Library website | UDiscover | Reading Lists | Elite | Study Skills | Contact Us | Feedback? Let us know your thoughts
© Library Services The University of Law.
- Last Updated: Nov 15, 2023 10:03 AM
- URL: https://law-uk.libguides.com/referencing
Home | Collections | Using our Libraries | Skills Academy | Library Help and Support | Referencing | UDiscover | Reading Lists | Elite | Twitter | Podcast | Contact Us | About Us
Uniform Legal Citation Style (McGill Guide)
The Canadian Guide to Uniform Legal Citation , or McGill Guide , is the most common guide used in law for citing references. Always check with your prof which citation style you should use!
The McGill Guide uses footnotes or endnotes (not in-text citation), as well as a bibliography of all works cited at the end of the research paper.
While the guide itself is not available online, learn how to cite the most common types of documents below.
Note that this resource is a guide — not the authoritative manual — based on the 10th edition of the McGill Guide (2023). If you don't know how to cite a particular item or you are citing an item not found in this guide, consult the print edition in the library, or contact us for help. For information on other guides, including the previous 9th edition (2018), see our main page on citing sources .
Always cite your sources!
Legal citation in academic papers usually requires footnotes or endnotes , rather than in-text citation. Footnotes are listed at the bottom of each page, while endnotes appear at the end of the paper. These will normally be in addition to a bibliography..
Footnotes or endnotes normally give a citation to a specific source or include additional information about a point made in the main text. Superscript numbers identify each note, indicated at the end of the sentence or immediately after a quotation, as appropriate.
The first time you cite a work in your paper, you should provide a complete citation for the work in the footnote or endnote. This complete citation will be listed again in your bibliography - see that section below for more details. Subsequent citations to the same work may use ibid or supra . See the McGill Guide at E-12 to E-13.
Ibid : Abbreviation for Latin word ibidem , meaning "in the same place". Use ibid when referring to the same source as in the immediately preceding reference. Ibid may be used after a supra , or after another ibid .
Supra : Latin word meaning "above". Use supra when referring to a source for which you have already provided a full citation in an earlier note (but not the one immediately prior, in which case you would use ibid ).
Short forms: Create a short form for a source if you will be referencing it multiple times, particularly if the title is longer than three words (see notes 1 and 4 above). Place the short form of the source in square brackets at the end of the first note, as in note 1 above. For books and articles, simply use the author's last name for subsequent references (see note 5), unless you have multiple sources by the same author, in which case a short form will be useful (eg, name + year, or name + part of title).
Pinpoint citation: To properly credit other sources, you should identify the precise page or paragraph number of the source you are relying on. This is called a pinpoint . Notes 1, 2, and 4 above demonstrate a pinpoint paragraph ("at para ##"), while note 5 demonstrates a pinpoint page ("at ##"). Note "para" is used for paragraph, but nothing is written prior to the pinpoint page.
Avoiding repetition: It is not necessary to repeat information provided in the text in the citation. For example, if the name of the case being cited is provided in the text of your paper, do not repeat the name in the citation.
For in-depth instructions on citing legislation, see chapter 2 of the McGill Guide . Also consult our guide on finding bills and statutes for more information, including the legislative process (how a bill becomes a law).
Bills: Laws are first presented for consideration by the legislature in the form of bills. These bills must be debated and then approved by the legislature, as well as receive royal assent, before becoming enforceable statutes or laws.
Statutes: Once a bill has been approved by a legislature, it becomes a statute or law. Statutes are first collected in annual volumes . Periodically, all the statutes in a particular jurisdiction (including any amendments made over the years) are collected and reprinted in a collection known as the revised statutes . When citing a statute, you don't normally have to list all the individual amendments when it was first passed; the assumption is that you mean the statute as it currently is.
Even those these are mostly all found online these days, citations still refer to the print format, however (ie, you don't include the URL). For more information, see 2.1.3 of the McGill Guide (E-21 to E-27).
Constitutional statutes are cited slightly differently. The most common examples are below - just make sure you change the pinpoints ("s ...") to the section(s) you are actually citing!
Indigenous laws and constitutions need additional information to help readers track the source. Translate titles using square brackets and no italics, but don't translate names of indigenous groups. URLs are usually necessary to include here. Some examples:
For more information on citing jurisprudence, see chapter 3 of the McGill Guide .
Jurisprudence or case law: These are the written reasons for a judge or decision-maker's decision once a case has been heard. Traditionally, these were printed in case law reporters, and often in more than one reporter (unlike scholarly articles, which are normally just printed in one journal). Nowadays, most cases can be found online in electronic databases.
Some profs may request otherwise, but according to the new 10th edition of the McGill Guide, the neutral citation should be the main (first) citation . If no neutral citation is available, then cite the case using the CanLII citation. Some older cases may have neither of these or the CanLII citation may not have paragraph numbers indicated; in that case, you should provide a main citation to a version of the case which includes paragraph numbers as well as a parallel (or second) citation for the case.
Neutral citations: Used to identify a case separately from any print reporter or online database, indicating the year of the decision, the court, and a decision number. Neutral citations are created by the court issuing the decision.
CanLII citations: The Canadian Legal Information Institute provides free, public access to Canadian case law, legislation and some commentary, and should be used when no neutral citation is available. These citations indicate the year, followed by "CanLII" and a serial number assigned to the document.
Parallel citations : Case law decisions are often published in more than one place (both in print and electronically). If you don't have a neutral citation and you either don't have a CanLII citation as well or the CanLII citation doesn't include paragraph/page numbers, your citation should include a second place the case can be found. Most online databases (including CanLII) will have a list of other citations for a case. See the Tremblay and Huot examples above, as well as 3.1 of the McGill Guide for more information.
Note re: pinpoints: If you are including a pinpoint - that is, you are citing or referring to a particular part of the written case - you should use paragraph numbers for your pinpoint, as in the Sharpe and Oakes examples above. If these are not available, use page numbers which refer to your main citation, as in the Tremblay example.
When citing journal articles, include the name of the author as it appears on the first page of the article. In addition, use the abbreviation for the name of the journal in which the article is published. A list of law journal abbreviations can be found in Appendix D of the McGill Guide , or you can use the Cardiff Index to Legal Abbreviations . For non-law journals, just write out the title of the journal in full.
Most articles are available online. You only need to indicate your online source or database if you used a very specialized database to find a source; this is not the case with most of Carleton's databases.
Remember! For footnotes and endnotes, you list authors by their first name then last name, as shown above. In the bibliography, you list your resources alphabetically, so authors will be listed by last name, first name for the first author, followed by the other authors' names in the same style as above (eg, Cox, Rachel & Karen Messing). See the Bibliography tab below for more details.
When citing books, list author and/or editor names as they appear on in the text.
When citing news sources, include the name of the newspaper, newswire, website, or other source in italics. You don't need to include the database you found the document in, but do include information about online sources (see below).
For news found online, use a permalink or DOI if one is available. If not, link to the site's top page, as in the Wolf example above.
Government documents include diverse sources ranging from legislative debates, reports from Parliamentary committees, and documents and reports from other bodies such as Officers of Parliament, Commissions of Inquiry, and government departments. Parliamentary documents are published by a legislative body (either federal, provincial, or territorial); all others are non-Parliamentary . See chapter 4 of the McGill Guide .
You don't usually need to mention the jurisdiction or legislature for federal Parliamentary documents, unless not doing so would lead to confusion. Always mention the jurisdiction and issuing body for non-Parliamentary documents, whether federal or not, unless it is obvious from another part of the citation.
Many government documents are now available online. To cite these, first give as much of the traditional citation as possible (the information needed is usually on the e-version of the document), then add the online information.
Indigenous treaties and land claims agreements are a special type of government document, and can be found on the website for Indigenous and Northern Affairs. Provide a short form for each numbered treaty and only list the date if it's not in the title. Some examples:
International documents include a wide range of materials from inter-governmental bodies such as the United Nations (UN) and the World Trade Organization (WTO), case law from international courts such as the International Court of Justice (ICJ) and the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), and bilateral and multilateral treaties. See Chapter 5 of the McGill Guide for more information, as well as the Foreign & International Law and United Nations subject guides.
While most treaties and UN documents can now be found online, you should still cite to the print version. Usually the information needed to properly cite the print is listed on the online version, and you can include an optional reference to the electronic source.
Foreign law refers to the laws of countries other than Canada, such as Australia, the United States, and the European Union. For international materials such as conventions from the United Nations, please see the section above on "Citing international documents".
More information on how to cite common examples coming soon! In the meantime, please see Chapter 7 of the McGill Guide for more information, as well as the Foreign & International Law subject guide.
For materials found solely or primarily online, including websites, blogs, social media, and podcasts, see s 6.9 of the McGill Guide .
For sources available in both print and electronic form, consult the relevant section of the guide (eg, jurisprudence in s 3.8, newspapers in s 6.13), and add information about the online source at the end of the traditional citation format. Information about online sources (direct URLs, archived URLs, and Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs)) can be found in s 1.6 of the McGill Guide.
This guide demonstrates the style for footnotes and endnotes. In most cases, however, you will also be expected to include a bibliography at the end of your paper, in addition to your foot/endnotes. The bibliography should be a list of all sources you used in preparing your paper, whether or not you actually directly cited them, arranged alphabetically by the author's name (when available).
You may wish to further organize your bibliography according to categories of sources; eg, jurisprudence, legislation, government documents, international documents, secondary sources. The style is largely the same as that for foot/endnotes, with the key difference being that where there is an author, you should list the author's last name first. If there are multiple authors, you only need to reverse the name of the first author. Any pinpoints are omitted in the bibliography.
Foot/Endnote reference: Patrick Fitzgerald, Barry Wright & Vincent Kazmierski, Looking at Law: Canada’s Legal System , 6th ed (Toronto: LexisNexis, 2010).
Bibliography reference: Fitzgerald, Patrick, Barry Wright & Vincent Kazmierski, Looking at Law: Canada's Legal System , 6th ed (Toronto: LexisNexis, 2010).
For in-depth instructions on creating a bibliography, see pages E-3 to E-4 of the McGill Guide .
Guide to Legal Writing and Style: Bluebooking for Law Review Footnotes
- Internet Resources
- Bluebooking for Court Documents
- Bluebooking for Law Review Footnotes
- Formatting your Appellate Brief
Basic Bluebooking for Law Review Footnotes
- Basic Bluebooking-Case Law in Law Journal Footnotes Two page guide to basic bluebooking for case law in legal documents. Includes examples and relevant rules for federal and New York case law. Also includes examples of short forms.
- Basic Bluebooking-Secondary Sources in Law Journal Footnotes Three page guide to basic bluebooking for the most commonly used secondary sources in law journal footnotes. Includes examples and relevant rules for books (single and multi-volume), law review articles, ALR, Am Jur, CJS, Black's, and Internet resources.
- Basic Bluebooking-Statutes in Law Journal Footnotes Two page guide to basic bluebooking for statutes in law journal footnotes. Includes examples and relevant rules for federal and New York statutes, and McKinney's practice commentaries.
- Bluebooking Differences between Court Documents and Law Review Articles. One page chart of major differences between in-text citation (for court documents) and citation in footnotes (for law review articles). Includes comparison of text with citations in a legal document to the same text with citations in a law review articles. his handout will help you prepare for the law review write-on competition.
- Changes in the 21st Edition of the Bluebook Includes a chart of the changes from the 20th Ed.
- Inserting Footnotes in MS Word
- Case Law (Federal)
- Case Law (New York)
- Secondary Sources
Citations in legal writing serve two purposes:
- Attribution - to identify the source of ideas expressed in the text, and
- Support - to direct the reader to specific authority supporting the proposition in the text
Avoid accidental plagiarism by citing a source for any idea that is not original.
There are many copies of the Bluebook on reserve. Ask for one at the Circulation Desk. You can subscribe to the Bluebook online here .
The white pages in the Bluebook address academic citation. This is citation for law reviews, journals, and other academic legal publications. These are the rules you will use for an academic paper or law review article.
The Bluepages section of the Bluebook addresses non-academic citation . It is citation for practitioners and law clerks. Here you will find guidance and examples of citation formats that you will use when writing your memoranda, briefs, and other court documents. This is the format for legal documents .
Page 7 has a helpful table that sets out the differences between the typeface used in non-academic and academic citation.
- Pace Law Library Guide to Case Citations Includes details on which court decisions are cited in each of the West regional reporters, federal reporters, and N.Y. state reporters.
*The trial level courts in New York include the Supreme Court, Court of Claims, Family Court, Surrogate's Court, County Courts, City Courts, Civil Court of the City of New York, Criminal Court of the City of New York, District Courts of Nassau and Suffolk Counties, and Town and Village Justice Courts. Opinions of the Appellate Term, an intermediate appellate court in the 1st and 2nd Departments, are also published in Miscellaneous Reports.
To summarize: for New York, cite the New York Supplement for all courts except the highest court, the New York Court of Appeals. Cite the North Eastern Reporter for the New York Court of Appeals.
- Guide to New York Case Citations Single page chart of most commonly cited case reporters for New York State.
Bluebook rule 12.3.2 requires the publication date of the print or an authenticated electronic edition in the parenthetical.
- For the U.S.C., there is an authenticated version here .
- For the U.S.C.A., the most recent chart with the dates of the print volumes is on this page . Click Summary of contents on the left.
- For N.Y., the most recent chart with dates of the McKinney's print volumes is on this page . Click Summary of contents on the left .
- For Calif., there is a chart with the dates of the print volumes here
- For Pa., there is a chart with the dates of the print volumes on this page . Click Summary of contents on the left.
- For N.J., the most recent chart with dates of the print volumes is on this page . Click Summary of contents on the left .
If the code is published by West (Thomson Reuters), look in the Thomson Reuters store and very often there will be a TOC with the dates of publication.
- Citing McKinney's Practice Commentaries
- Citing N.Y. Criminal Jury Instructions
- << Previous: Bluebooking for Court Documents
- Next: Formatting your Appellate Brief >>
- Last Updated: Sep 19, 2023 10:42 AM
- URL: https://libraryguides.law.pace.edu/legalwriting
King's Guide to Referencing 2020
- Getting Started with Referencing
- Choosing the right software
- King's Author-Date (APA 7th)
- King's Footnotes (Chicago 17th)
- King's Numbered (Vancouver)
- Legal Footnotes (OSCOLA 4th)
- Subject Specific Guides This link opens in a new window
Citing primary sources using the Legal Footnotes style
Cases in england and wales:.
1 Corr v IBC Vehicles Ltd  UKHL 13,  1 AC 884
Case citations are usually made up of three elements: the case name, the neutral citation and the law report. This case citation tells us that the judgment in Corr v IBC Vehicles Ltd was issued in 2008 by the House of Lords. It was the 13th judgment issued by the House of Lords that year. The second half of the citation tells us that a report of this judgment is located in volume 1 of the 2008 edition of the series of the Law Reports called the Appeal Cases, starting on page 884.
Neutral citations were only introduced in the UK in the early 2000s so many older cases (and those from some lower courts) may not have a neutral citation. This is how to reference cases without a neutral citation:
1 Page v Smith  AC 155 (HL)
This case citation tells us that the judgment in Page v Smith was reported in the 1996 edition of the series of the Law Reports called the Appeal Cases, starting on page 155.
UK Primary legislation:
1 Human Rights Act 1998
Citing secondary sources using the Legal Footnotes style
1 Howard Davis Human Rights Law (Oxford University Press 2016) 217
In the footnote include page numbers identifying the specific pages the ideas you are referencing come from at the end. In this example, the page number is 217.
Davis H Human Rights Law (Oxford University Press 2016)
A chapter from an edited book:
1 Tullio Treves and Cesare Pitea 'Piracy, International Law and Human Rights' in Nihal Bhuta (ed) The Frontiers of Human Rights: Extraterritoriality and its Challenges (Oxford University Press 2016)
Bhuta N (ed) The Frontiers of Human Rights: Extraterritoriality and its Challenges (Oxford University Press 2016)
A journal article:
1 Aoife Daly, "Climate Competence: Youth Climate Activism and Its Impact on International Human Rights Law " (2022) 22(2) H.R.L.Rev. 1
Daly A "Climate Competence: Youth Climate Activism and Its Impact on International Human Rights Law " (2022) 22(2) H.R.L.Rev.
In the footnote include page numbers identifying the specific pages the ideas you are referencing come from at the end. In this example, the page number is 1.
OSCOLA Style Manual
Legal Footnotes style is in practice the OSCOLA style. This means citations are placed in numbered footnotes.You will still need to create a bibliography or reference list in alphabetical order at the end of your document when using this style.
- OSCOLA Guide to Referencing (4th Ed.) OSCOLA 4th edition has been chosen as the Legal Footnotes style. Find guidance on how to properly format citations and references here for a range of sources.
- OSCOLA Quick Reference Guide
- Cardiff Index to Legal Abbreviations OSCOLA requires you to use the standard abbreviated title of journals. In the first instance, you should check to see if a journal's abbreviated title is in the OSCOLA Handbook. If it isn't listed, use the Cardiff Index to Legal Abbreviations.
Building your bibliography in the Legal Footnotes style
You need to provide a list of the sources you have used. In the OSCOLA style this is called a Bibliography. It is arranged in alphabetical order of author's surname:
Bailey J, Construction Law (Routledge 2016)
Finch E and Fafinski S Legal Skills (4th edn, Oxford University Press 2021)
Fisher E, Risk Regulation and Administrative Constitutionalism (Hart Publishing 2007)
How to create a footnote in MS Word
To create a footnote citation in Word, click on References and Insert Footnote:
Want to know more about the Author-Date, Footnotes, or Numbered style?
Need to know more about the Author-Date, Footnotes, or Numbered styles?
You can find videos to learn more about the styles in use and some quizzes you can take to make sure you know what you need to do, on KLaSS:
- << Previous: King's Numbered (Vancouver)
- Next: Subject Specific Guides >>
- Last Updated: Dec 1, 2023 1:48 PM
- URL: https://libguides.kcl.ac.uk/reference
- RRU Writing Centre
Q. How do I repeat a legal citation to a single reference?
What is the correct use of abbreviations (such as " Ibid " or " Supra ") or short forms of a case to repeat a legal citation?
- 2 Academic Integrity
- 45 Academic writing
- 38 APA Style
- 32 APA Style: Formatting
- 107 APA Style: In-text citations
- 105 APA Style: References
- 18 Legal citations
- 15 Paraphrasing
- 10 Punctuation
- 24 Quotations
- 16 Writing Centre information
- 64 Writing Centre resources
Answered By: Jonathan Faerber (he/him/his) Last Updated: Nov 03, 2023 Views: 4245
Once a footnote introduces a citation for a legal resource (see "1" below), the italicized words " ibid " (standing for “ibidem” or “in the same place” in Latin) or “ supra ” (meaning “above” in Latin) in subsequent footnotes indicate a repeated citation to a source (McGill Law Journal, 2023, E-11). The abbreviation " ibid " on its own repeats the entire citation in the subsequent footnote, including the exact pinpoint included in the preceding footnote, as in "2" below (McGill Law Journal, 2023, E-12). By contrast, “ ibid ” combined with a new location of cited material repeats the citation with an additional pinpoint (see "3" below):
1. Criminal Code, 1985 RSC, c C-46 ss 293 – 298.
3 . Ibid at 295(2) – (3).
Rather than repeating the original citation from a previous footnote, the word "supra " combined with a title in a footnote refers to the first citation contained in a document including that title, with each " supra " footnote containing the pinpoint for the specific location of material cited in text (McGill Law Journal, 2023, E-12). For instance, rather than repeating the original, full citation from "4" below, the title combined with the word supra in "5" below refers to the case introduced in the original citation contained in "4":
4. R v Morgentaler , 1988 CanLII 90 (SCC)
5 . R v Morgentaler, supra at 34 – 35.
Occasionally, when the main title of a case or legislation is longer than three words, a short title in italics and square brackets after the first citation (see "6") creates an abbreviated format for the case. Combing this shorter title of the case with supra in a repeated citation refers to the full title in the original citation, as in "7" below:
6. Tsilhqot'in Nation v British Columbia , 2014 SCC 44 at 260 [ Tsilhqot'in ].
7. Tsilhqot'in, supra at 262.
For more information on referring to a specific location in the source (e.g., when citing quoted or paraphrased text), please also see What is a Pinpoint, and How is it Used in a Legal Citation? and please refer to the information in the Writing Centre's Legal Citation Guide for an introduction to the McGill Guide (10th ed.) rules for legal citations.
McGill Law Journal. (2023). Canadian guide to uniform legal citation (10 th ed.). Thomson Reuters.
- Share on Facebook
Was this helpful? Yes 0 No 0
Bluebook Legal Citation System Guide
The bluebook, six-steps to creating a citation, bluebook faqs, bluebook training videos, beyond the bluebook, getting help.
This is a guide to the Bluebook system of American legal citation. The information here can help anyone who is writing a scholarly legal paper in the United States, including JD students, LLM students, and SJD students.
The Bluebook is currently in its 21st edition, released in June 2020. It is available in two formats: as a print book, and as an electronic publication. To buy a print copy or a subscription to the electronic version, visit https://www.legalbluebook.com/ .
All references to print book page number in this guide are from the 21st edition.
The Bluebook: An Overview
The Bluebook has two sections:
- The Bluepages section: citation rules for documents written by practitioners, like legal memoranda and court filings.
- The Whitepages section: citation rules for legal academic publications, including law journal articles.
Since law school work focuses on academic writing, this guide describes and explains the rules in the Whitepages section.
Citation Rule Categories
- Rules 1-8 (pp. 61-94): Style rules , including typeface, capitalization, abbreviation, quotations, and cross references.
- Rule 10 (p. 95): Cases
- Rule 11 (p. 119): Constitutions
- Rule 12 (p. 120): Statutes, Codes, and Session Laws
- Rule 13 (p. 135): Legislative Materials (including Congressional documents)
- Rule 14 (p. 142): Administrative and Executive Materials
- Rule 15 (p. 147): Books, Reports, and other Nonperiodic Materials
- Rule 16 (p. 157): Periodical Materials (including journal articles and newspapers)
- Rule 17 (p. 169): Unpublished and Forthcoming Sources
- Rules for citing non-print sources , including internet and other electronic sources: Rule 18 (p. 174)
- Rules for citing foreign (non-U.S.) materials: Rule 20 (p. 188)
- Rules for citing international materials: Rule 21 (p. 195)
Table 1 (p. 227) has jurisdiction-specific rules for citing U.S. federal and state cases, statutes, and other primary legal materials.
Table 2 has rules for citing sources from selected foreign jurisdictions. It is no longer in the print version of the Bluebook, but it is freely available online .
Tables 3 (international organizations, p. 299) and 4 (treaties, p. 302) have rules for citing international sources.
Finally, many Bluebook rules require certain names, words, and phrases to be shortened. Tables 6-16 (starting on p. 304) list these abbreviations.
To create a correct Bluebook citation, follow this quick six-step process:
- Figure out what type of source you want to cite: a case, a statute, a book, a journal article, etc.
- Go to the Bluebook rule for that source type. For example, if it's a U.S. case, go to rule 10.
- Read the rule carefully and study any examples provided closely.
- Determine the components of the citation and get them from the source.
- Draft a citation that looks like the most relevant example.
- Edit the citation using style rules, tables, etc., to make it correct.
To see an example of how this process works with an article from the NY Times website, check out the short video below.
To download the PowerPoint slide deck shown in this video, click the icon below.
- PowerPoint Slides: Six-Step Citation Creation Process
FAQ #1: Is there a program I can use to generate Bluebook-style citations automatically?
If you want them to be 100% correct, then no.
The Zotero Citation Management System has an option for generating Bluebook-style citations. However, Zotero's citations are frequently not Bluebook-perfect (especially for primary sources like cases and statutes), so you will have to fix them if you want them to be right.
The PowerNotes Content Management System also has an option for generating Bluebook-style citations. It does Bluebook a bit better than Zotero, but its citations are not perfect either. If you want them to be correct, you have to fix them.
Anything you download from HeinOnline as a PDF will include a Bluebook citation on the first page of the PDF. Those citations are often close but not entirely right. For example, Hein-generated citations do not use small caps for book and journal titles. So, again, you can use them but you will have to fix them.
Lexis and Westlaw show citations for every case. These are generally correct in that the letters and numbers are right. But many cases are reported in multiple reporters, and the Bluebook has requirements regarding which citation version you use depending on the court. So you can and should use them, but you still have to use Rule 10 and Table T1 to make them perfectly compliant with the Bluebook rules.
In other words, there is no getting around learning the Bluebook if you are writing an American legal academic paper that requires citations to be in Bluebook format . No automated process will do a better Bluebook citation than a human being reading and applying the rules.
FAQ #2: OK, fine. Does the Bluebook have a list of citation examples for each rule?
Yes! Right inside the front cover there is a quick guide to the major rules, with citation examples. Use this as a quick reference if you can't remember which rule covers which type of source.
FAQ #3: How do I cite something I found online?
Rule 18 has rules for citing internet sources, websites, documents found online, blogs, social media posts, etc. This guide has a short video that demonstrates how this works for a website (click Bluebook Training Videos in the table of contents to the left of this text to navigate to it).
Remember, the Bluebook really prefers that you cite to a print source. It has gotten more flexible over the years. However, for something like a law review article, even if you found it online, you still need to follow the instructions in Rule 16 to cite it.
FAQ #4: How do I cite a source that I cited in another footnote?
Instructions for doing this are in Rule 3.5: Internal Cross-References .
If you cited only one source in footnote #1, and you want to cite the exact same source in footnote #2, that is when you use id. Only the source has to be the same, not the page or section.
In the below example, footnote #2 is citing page 200 of the Messi case.
For secondary sources like law review articles and books, if you want to cite a source that you cited longer ago in your paper than the previous footnote, you can use supra .
When you do a supra citation, you have to use the same font specifications as you did in the original citation. What does that mean? Check out footnote #3 below, which cites a book. According to rule 15, both the author and the title of the book must be in small caps. This same book is also cited in footnotes #5, #7, and #11. In each of those, the author's name is in small caps.
This rule is slightly different for cases, however.
- For the short form of a case, the general rule is to use the name of the first party, italicized (as was done in footnotes #4 and #13 in the example below).
- If the case was cited more than five footnotes ago, you cannot use a short form; you have to cite the whole case again (as shown in footnote #14 below).
Footnote #1: Messi v. Haaland, 100 F.4th 197 (9th Cir. 2021). Footnote #2: Id . at 200. Footnote #3: Kylian Mbapp é , Comparative Constitutional Jurisprudence in the Twenty-First Century 15 (2022). Footnote #4: Messi , 100 F.4th, at 201. Footnote #5: Mbapp é , supra note 3, at 58-59. Footnote #6: Manuel Neuer, Why the Judiciary Needs Term Limits , 200 Harv. L. Rev. 1, 7 (2022). Footnote #7: Mbapp é , supra note 3, at 88. Footnote #8: See Neuer, supra note 6, at 9-11 (describing how establishing term limits for judges in Germany has instilled more confidence in that country's judiciary). Footnote #9: Zinchenko v. Davies, 101 F.4th 408, 409 (2nd Cir. 2022). Footnote #10: Id . at 415. Footnote #11: See generally Mbapp é , supra note 3. Footnote #12: But see id . at 227-30 (outlining Mbapp é's argument that constitutional court judges should also be trained in areas other than law). Footnote #13: Zinchenko , 101 F.4th at 410; see also Neuer, supra note 6, at 15-16. Footnote #14: Messi v. Haaland, 100 F.4th 197, 202 (9th Cir. 2021).
FAQ #5: Help! When I add new footnotes, the numbering in supra citations gets messed up.
It's a fact of life that footnote numbers change as we add and remove footnotes from our paper during the editing process.
Fortunately, Microsoft Word has a feature that can help. There is a video further down in this guide that explains how to use Word's Internal Cross-Reference feature to add footnote reference numbers to supra citations (click Bluebook Training Videos in the table of contents to the left of this text to navigate to it).
If you use this feature, these numbers will be connected to the source that you're citing. What does that mean? Suppose you first cite a book by Sandra Jones in footnote #28 in your paper, like this:
Then, you cite that same book in footnote #34, like this:
What happens if, later on, you add another footnote to your paper BEFORE the Jones book citation that has been in footnote #28? That's right: that Jones book citation is pushed back to footnote #29. That also means that the supra note number in footnote #34 (which is now footnote #35) needs to change, from 28 to 29.
When you first create footnote #34, don't manually type "28" after " supra note." Instead, insert it as a cross-reference, following the instructions in the video below. That way, when it needs to be updated when the footnote numbers change, you can tell Word to do that automatically. That procedure is also explained in the video.
If you do this every time you add a supra citation, you will be able to update all of the numbers in all of the supra citations in your paper in a few keystrokes, regardless of how many footnotes you have. Please consider using this headache-preventing device.
FAQ #6: When should I use "see" in a footnote?
Introductory signals explain why and how you are citing and using a source.They are listed below, and rule 1.2 explains their use.
- See generally
In the example below, signals are used in footnotes #8, #11, and #12.
When using a signal like " See " or " But see ," you may want to use a parenthetical to explain why you are citing a particular source. This is shown in footnotes #8 and #12 in the example below. For more information about how this works, see rule 1.5: Parenthetical Information .
FAQ #7: Are there special rules for citing non-English foreign sources?
Instructions for citing foreign (non-English) materials are provided in detail in Rule 20.2 and in the individual country sections in Table T2 (which is freely available online; note not every jurisdiction is covered) .
Generally, when it comes to language version, you need to cite the source you are referring to, as detailed in rules 20.2.2 and 20.2.5 .
If you are referring to a non-English primary source in its original language , you should cite the original-language version. Here's an example of this from the German version of the Political Parties Act:
If you are referring to a primary source that was translated into English , you should cite the translated version. Here's an example of this from an English-language translation of the Swiss Civil Procedure Code that is available on the Swiss government's website:
Cite foreign books just like U.S. books according to rule 15. For articles from foreign periodicals and newspapers , see rule 20.6 .
Providing an English-language translation of foreign-language article titles is permitted, but not necessary. There is no stated rule for providing translations of book titles. Remember, however, if your paper is targeting a U.S. audience, many readers will find those kinds of translations helpful.
FAQ #8: Are there special capitalization rules for titles?
Americans capitalize most words in titles, and the Bluebook's capitalization rule, Rule 8 , reflects this preference:
- General rule: capitalize all words, including the initial word and the word immediately following a colon.
- Articles (such as a, an, the)
- Conjunctions (these are words that connect words, sentences, or phrases, such as for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so)
- Prepositions (such as with, by, in, on)
- Exception to the exception: Capitalize any of those words if they are the first word of the title, the first word after a colon, or more than four letters.
Incorrect article title capitalization: Hearing the voiceless: a respected judge on putting the rights of crime victims above those of defendants
Correct article title capitalization: Hearing the Voiceless: A Respected Judge on Putting the Rights of Crime Victims Above Those of Defendants
FAQ #9: Where do I put the footnote numbers in the text, before or after the punctuation?
In American legal writing, as opposed to that in many other countries, place the footnote number AFTER punctuation marks, including periods, commas, quotations marks, etc. Note, however, that there are two types of punctuation marks that should have the footnote number placed before them: colons, and dashes. This is shown in the example accompanying rule 1.1.
Bluebook Tips Video Series
We have some short videos of Bluebook tips that are based on the FAQ in this guide.
The first tip video explains the answers to both FAQ #3 (using id and supra) and FAQ #4 (using Word's internal cross reference feature), all in one 3:30 video!
The next tip video discusses FAQ #2 - using rule 18 to cite online sources. It also talks about perma.cc , the Harvard Law School Library Innovation Lab's website archival tool.
Here's another video that was made based on a recent question we received in the research service department. It describes how to cite a federal statute as a session law (using rule 12.4) and not how it was codified in the U.S. Code. Examples are given for two types of citations: to a chapter number (for very old statutes), or to a public law number (for newer statutes).
Bluebook Training Class in Two Parts (Video, From 2020)
Below is a two-part recording of a Bluebook training class offered by Jennifer in March 2020. Although it references the 20th edition of the Bluebook, the class is still relevant and provides a good basic introduction to general Bluebook style and citation rules for US and foreign sources.
Over It? Here Are Some Other Options...
- ALWD Guide to Legal Citation The ALWD (Association of Legal Writing Directors) Guide to Legal Citation explains legal citation formats for all types of legal documents in a clear, pedagogically sound manner. The Guide’s plain language, numerous examples, and clear, integrated structure to explaining the legal system of citation for legal materials is easy for students, professors, practitioners, and judges to understand and use.
- The Indigo Book The Indigo Book is a free, Creative Commons-dedicated implementation of The Bluebook’s Uniform System of Citation. The Indigo Book was compiled by a team of students at the New York University School of Law, working under the direction of Professor Christopher Jon Sprigman.
- OSCOLA: Oxford University Standard for Citation of Legal Authorities The Oxford University Standard for Citation of Legal Authorities is designed to facilitate accurate citation of authorities, legislation, and other legal materials. It is widely used in law schools and by journal and book publishers in the UK and beyond.
Ask Us! Submit a question or search our knowledge base.
Chat with us! Chat with a librarian (HLS only)
Email: [email protected]
Contact Historical & Special Collections at [email protected]
Meet with Us Schedule an online consult with a Librarian
Hours Library Hours
Classes View Training Calendar or Request an Insta-Class
Text Ask a Librarian, 617-702-2728
Call Reference & Research Services, 617-495-4516
- Last Updated: Sep 12, 2023 10:46 AM
- URL: https://guides.library.harvard.edu/law/bluebook
Harvard University Digital Accessibility Policy