Legal citation and the Encyclopedia

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Legal Citation and the Encyclopedia

See How to Cite the Encyclopedia

Citation

A Citation may be defined as a reference that identifies a particular case, law review article, book, statute or other resource. For example, in the United States, the citation for John v. Smith may be 820 U.S. 999 (1985). The case appears, therefore, in volume 820 of the official United States Reports beginning on page 999. This non-real opinion was issued in 1985. 42 U.S.C. §1983 is the citation for civil rights legislation. It appears in title 42 of the United States Code at section 1983. See also parallel citation.

The journey to perfect Legal Citation

Basic Citation

Basic citations in the United States:

U.S. – United States Reports, the official reporter for US Supreme Court cases.
S.Ct – Supreme Court Reporter, an unofficial reporter of US Supreme Court cases.
L.Ed.2d – Lawyers’ Edition, an unofficial reporter of US Supreme Court cases.
U.S.C. – United States Code, the official version of the federal statutory code.
U.S.C.A. & U.S.C.S., two unofficial, annotated versions of the federal statutory code.
C.F.R. – Code of Federal Regulations, the codified subject arrangement of current regulations issued by agencies of the executive branch of the federal government.
F., F.2d, and F.3d – Federal Reporter, first second and third series. This is the reporter for opinions of the federal courts of appeals. Not all of the federal circuit courts’ opinions are published.
F. Supp. and F. Supp.2d – The Federal Supplement is the reporter for published opinions of the federal district courts, which are trial courts. Most opinions of the district courts are not published.

Citation Format

The Bluebook and ALWD provide rules on proper citation format.

Readers may want to convert citations automatically into proper Bluebook format.

There are citation management tools such as EndNote and Zotero, which offer some support for legal citation styles, but both tools were originally designed for citation from style manuals in the sciences and the humanities, not legal citation support, and they produce errors in the output.

CiteGenie, a Firefox add-on designed specifically for use in Legal Research , is helpful. The site FAQ clearly outlines what the system can and cannot do for example, CiteGenie cannot automatically detect subsequent cites where one would normally use the short form (e.g. “Shaw, supra note 4” ).

Citations in the Encyclopedia of Law

in the United States

The Encyclopeia of Law is both a website (a wiki-blog) and an Encyclopedia.

Style:

The Bluebook

  • Legal encyclopedias : Rule 15.8. Ex: 98 C.J.S. Witnesses ‘ 397 (2002).
  • Internet: Rule 18.2.3

The Bluebook contains different formats for material that appears only on the Web and for material that appears on the Web and in other medium. The position of the date parenthetical moves depending on the type of information cited.

As an Internet resource:

Bluebook Rule 18.2.2 (b) states, “All efforts should be made to include a title that sufficiently identifies the page but that is not unwieldy, long, uninformative, or confusing.”

Citation to an entry, guide or essay:

  • John Smith, Entry Title, The Wiki Encyclopedia of Law, Oct. 3, 2012, https://lawin.org/entry-name; or
  • John Smith, Entry Title, The Wiki Encyclopedia of Law, Oct. 3, 2012, available at https://lawin.org/entry-name.

Citation to a comment:

Joe, Comment to Entry Title, The Wiki Encyclopedia of Law, Oct. 3, 2012, https://lawin.org/entry-name.

(Being Joe the commenter’s username)

ALWD Citation Manual

  • Legal encyclopedias : Rule 26. Example: 98 C.J.S. Witnesses ‘ 397 (2002).
  • Internet: Rule 40

In legal encyclopedias there are no substantial differences with the Bluebook; however, ALWD provides expanded coverage and includes a list of many abbreviations for state encyclopedias.

The Wiki Encyclopedia of Law, Entry Title, https://lawin.org (accessed Oct. 03, 2012).

For Internet, ALWD permits the abbreviation of an organizational author’s name, to save space. ALWD uses Accessed instead of Avisited to be consistent with non-legal citation guides.

MLA

Being the Encyclopedia of Law a “Web”, the writer should include the website name and the date on which the writer accessed the article online. The website name should be italicized and placed before the medium, along with a period. The accessed date should follow the medium (and be formatted using the international format of “day month year”), along with a period. Medium may be “Web”or “Internet”.

Last Name, First Name. “Page Title.”Website title. Sponsoring Institution/Publisher, Publication Date. Medium. Date Accessed.

With an author:

Smith, John. “The Encyclopedia of Law.”The Wiki Encyclopedia of Law. Lawi. Web. 3 Oct. 2012.<https://lawin.org>.

Without authors:

“The Encyclopedia of Law.”The Wiki Encyclopedia of Law. Lawi, n.d. Web. 3 Oct. 2012. <https://lawin.org>.

With several authors:

Smith, John, Jane Doe, and Bob Anderson. “The Encyclopedia of Law.”The Wiki Encyclopedia of Law. Lawi. Web. 3 Oct. 2012.<https://lawin.org>.

Smith, John, Jane Doe, and Bob Anderson. “Obama inaugurated as President.”CNN.com. Cable News Network, 21 Jan. 2009. Web. 1 Feb. 2009.

Only the first author’s name should be reversed, while the others are written in normal order. Separate author names by a comma, and place the word “and”before the last author’s name. For pages with three or more authors, you may either include each author in the citation or only include the first author, followed by the abbreviation “et al.”

Last Name, First Name. “Article title.”Encyclopedia/Dictionary name. Year Published. Medium.

Smith, John, Jane Doe, and Bob Anderson. “Internet.”Encyclopedia Britannica. 2009. Print.

“house.”Synonyms.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2012. Web. 3 Oct. 2012. <https://www.synonyms.net/synonym/house>.

“William Shakespeare.”Encyclopedia Britannica. 2009. Encyclopedia Britannica Online. 20 May. 2009. <https://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/537853/William-Shakespeare>

Chicago

Lawi. “The Encyclopedia of Law.”The Wiki Encyclopedia of Law. https://lawin.org (accessed October 3, 2012).

Last Name, First Name. “Page Title.”Website Title. Web Address (retrieved Date Accessed).

Smith, John, and Jane Doe. “Obama inaugurated as President.”CNN.com. htp://www.cnn.com/POLITICS/01/21/obama_inaugurated/index.html (accessed February 1, 2009).

Last Name, First Name. Encyclopedia/Dictionary name, Edition ed., s.v. “Article Title.”Publication City: Publisher Name, Year Published.
Smith, John, and Jane Doe. Encyclopaedia Britannica, 8th ed., s.v. “Internet.”Chicago: Encyclopaedia Britannica, 2009.

If the article was published online, the writter should conclude his citation by including the word “Retrieved”, followed by the date on which you accessed the website (written in the format of “month day, year”). Follow the date with a comma, the word “from”, and the web address of the website.

Smith, J. (2009). Internet. In Encyclopaedia Britannica (Vol. 20, pp. 81-82). Chicago: Encyclopaedia Britannica. Retrieved February 21, 2009, from https://www.britannica.com/articles/id=2533

APA

The Encyclopedia of Law. (n.d.). The Wiki Encyclopedia of Law. Retrieved October 3, 2012, from https://lawin.org

Last Name, First. “Page Title.”Website Title. Retrieved Date Accessed, from Web Address

Smith, J., & Doe, J. (2009, January 21). Obama inaugurated as President. CNN.com. Retrieved February 1, 2009, from https://www.cnn.com/POLITICS/01/21/obama_inaugurated/index.html

Last Name, F. (Year Published). Article Title. In Encyclopedia/Dictionary name (Vol. Volume Number, Page Numbers). Publication City: Publisher Name.

Smith, J., & Doe, J. (2009). Internet. In Encyclopaedia Britannica (Vol. 20, pp. 81-82). Chicago: Encyclopaedia Britannica.

was published online, conclude your citation by including the word “Retrieved”, followed by the date on which you accessed the website (written in the format of “month day, year”). Follow the date with a comma, the word “from”, and the web address of the website.

Smith, J. (2009). Internet. In Encyclopaedia Britannica (Vol. 20, pp. 81-82). Chicago: Encyclopaedia Britannica. Retrieved February 21, 2009, from https://www.britannica.com/articles/id=2533

f the article was published online, conclude your citation by including the word “Retrieved”, followed by the date on which you accessed the website (written in the format of “month day, year”). Follow the date with a comma, the word “from”, and the web address of the website.

Smith, J. (2009). Internet. In Encyclopaedia Britannica (Vol. 20, pp. 81-82). Chicago: Encyclopaedia Britannica. Retrieved February 21, 2009, from https://www.britannica.com/articles/id=2533

Turabian

Lawi. “The Encyclopedia of Law.”The Wiki Encyclopedia of Law. https://lawin.org (accessed October 3, 2012).

Last Name, First Name. “Page Title.”Website Title. Web Address (retrieved Date Accessed).

Smith, John, Jane Doe, and Bob Anderson. “Obama inaugurated as President.”CNN.com. htp://www.cnn.com/POLITICS/01/21/obama_inaugurated/index.html (accessed February 1, 2009).

If no author is available, begin the citation with the website owner.

Cable News Network. “Obama inaugurated as President.”CNN.com. htp://www.cnn.com/POLITICS/01/21/obama_inaugurated/index.html (accessed February 1, 2009).

Last Name, First Name. Encyclopedia/Dictionary name, Edition ed., s.v. “Article Title.”Publication City: Publisher Name, Year Published.

The first author’s name should be reversed, with a comma being placed after the last name and a period after the first name (or any middle name). The name should be written as it appears in the encyclopedia. A suffix, such as a roman numeral or Jr./Sr. should appear after the author’s given name, preceded by a comma.

For an article written by two or more authors, list them in order as they appear in the encyclopedia. Only the first author’s name should be reversed, while the others are written in normal order. Separate each author by a comma, and place the word “and”before the last author’s name. Include each author’s name in the citation – never use “et al”in place of anyone’s name.

Smith, John, and Jane Doe. Encyclopaedia of Law, 1st ed., s.v. “Internet.”Chicago: Encyclopaedia of Law, 2014.

Include the encyclopedia/dictionary name in italics, a comma, the encyclopedia/dictionary’s edition, and the abbreviation “ed.”Then include a comma and the abbreviation “s.v.”, and then place the article title, along with a period, in quotation marks.

If the encyclopedia/dictionary’s volume is available and the work does not arrange entries alphabetically, cite the volume after the article title, along with the abbreviation “vols.”

John Smith. Encyclopaedia of Law, 1st ed., s.v. “Internet.”X vols. Chicago: Encyclopaedia of Law, 2014.

Include the city of publication, a colon, the publisher, a comma, and the year of publication. End the citation with a period.

If the article has no author, begin the citation with the encyclopedia/dictionary name.

Encyclopaedia of Law, 1st ed., s.v. “Internet.”Chicago: Encyclopaedia of Law, 2014.

If you are citing the entire encyclopedia/dictionary and not a specific article, exclude the following parts of the citation: the authors, the article title, and the “s.v.”abbreviation.

Encyclopaedia of Law, 1st ed. Chicago: Encyclopaedia Britannica, 2014.

If the article was published online, include the web address of the article, and then place the word “accessed”, along with the date on which you accessed the website (written in the format of “month day, year”) in parentheses. Conclude the citation with a period after the parentheses.

John Smith. Encyclopaedia of Law, 1st ed., s.v. “Article Title.”Chicago: Encyclopaedia of Law, 2014. https://lawin.org/john-smith/ (accessed January 19, 2014).

Citation for Historical Works

In some cases, the citation may refer to the original source of the information published in the Encyclopedia of Law. Sources may include the author, custodian, publisher and archive for the original records.

Further Reading

See Lee F. Peoples’ 2010 article, The Citation of Blogs in Judicial Opinions, which was published in the Tulane Journal of Technology & Intellectual Property.

Conclusion

Notes

See Also

About the Author/s and Rewiever/s

Author: admin

References and Further Reading

About the Author/s and Reviewer/s

Author: admin

Mentioned in these Entries

History of Citation Indexing, Legal Citation, Legal Research, Legal encyclopedias, Online Citation.

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