Citation of legal materials is a little different from the typical resources used in other classes. Some legal citations will need to include where the information was electronically published, but a lot of legal citations won’t actually need this. Where you located a court case—Findlaw.com for example—would not make any difference since the reader could find the case easily by using the other information provided in the citation.

If the cited material is not available from multiple publication sites, then the citation should provide the specific electronic source publication to enable the reader to access it.

However, frequently cited legal materials such as court cases, constitutions, statutes, and regulations (shown below) do not require citation to the electronic source publication because these materials have been reproduced in multiple publication sites.

In-Text Citation

Use the name of the case in italics and the year of the decision.

Ex: (Meritor Sav. Bank v. Vinson, 1986)

References

On the references page, include the name of each party in italics, the reporter volume number, abbreviated reporter name, first page of case, and date.

Ex: Meritor Sav. Bank v. Vinson, 477 U.S. 57, 60 (1986).

In Text Citation

Include constitution, amendment, and section.

Ex: U.S. Const. amend. XIV, § 2.

References

On references page, include the abbreviation on constitution cited, the abbreviation for amendment, the number of amendment cited, and section.

Ex: U.S. Const. amend. XIV, § 2.

In Text Citation

When citing statutes, include the statute and section only.

Ex: Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act §§  9601-9675

References

On the references page, include the U.S.C. number, the abbreviation of the code cited, the span of sections containing statute, and the date of code edition cited.

Ex: Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, 42 U.S.C. §§9601-9675 (2000).

In-text citation

When citing regulations, include the name of the regulation and the year.

Ex:(FCC Broadcast Radio Services, 1999).

References

On the references page, use the name of the regulation, the C.F.R. title number, the specific section cited, and the date of the code edition cited.

Ex: FCC Broadcast Radio Services, 47 C.F.R. § 73.609 (1999).