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Citation Help for APA, 7th Edition: Legal Materials

Help with common issues and questions with APA 7th edition

Introduction

When creating legal references in APA Style, most legal materials are cited using the standard legal citation style found in the Bluebook, 20th edition. 

Legal materials include federal and state statutes, court decisions and court cases, executive orders, legislative materials, federal hearings and testimony, federal regulations, patents, constitutions and charters, treaties, and international conventions. 

Copies of the Bluebook, 20th edition can be found on Reserve in the CSS Library. Request Reserve materials as the main circulation desk on the first floor of the Library. 

More Information: For more information about citing legal materials, see Chapter 11 of the APA Manual, 7th edition.

Legal Citation Help

Need Legal Citation Guidance?

 

When citing legal sources, APA Style follows the standard legal citation style used across all disciplines. APA provides examples of legal references; however, they advise to consult The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation, 20th edition. Additionally, the APA Manual suggests seeking assistance from law school websites or law libraries. They specifically mention the Legal Information Institute at Cornell Law School to locate free guidance with legal citations. 
 

More information:

For more information about legal references, see Chapter 11 on pages 355-368 in the APA Manual, 7th edition.

Additionally, when creating legal references, consult The Bluebook, which is on Reserve in the CSS Library. 

Websites for Additional Legal Resources

Variations - URLs?

Long, Complicated URL?

 

Some URLs may be long and complicated. APA 7th edition allows the use of shorter URLs. Shortened URLs can be created using any URL shortener service; however, if you choose to shorten the URL, you must double-check that the URL is functioning and brings the reader to the correct website. 

Common URL Shortner websites include:

‚Äč

More Information

For more information about URLs, see Section 9.36 on page 300 of APA Manual, 7th edition. 

NOTE: Check your instructor's preference about using short URLs. Some instructors may want the full URL. 

Variations - Live Hyperlinks?

Should my URLs be live?

It depends. When adding URLs to a paper or other work, first, be sure to include the full hyperlink. This includes the http:// or the https://. Additionally, consider where and how the paper or work will be published or read. If the work will only be read in print or as a Word doc or Google Doc, then the URLs should not be live (i.e., they are not blue or underlined). However, if the work will be published or read online, then APA advises to include live URLs. This would allow the reader to click on a link and go to the source. 
 

More Information

For more information, see Section 9.35 on pages 299-300 of the APA Manual, 7th edition. 

NOTE: Check your instructor's preference about using live URLs. Some instructors may not want you to use live URLs. 

State Statute

Example

 

Uniform Limited Partnership Act 2001, Minn. Stat. § 321.0101-1208 (2001 & rev. 2004). https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/cite/321

Explanation

 

Name of the Act: Uniform Limited Partnership Act 2001,

Begin the reference with the name of the act. Capitalize all majors words in the title of the act. After the title of the act, add a comma.
 

Source: Minn. Stat.

Next, add the official source for the state statutes. For Minnesota, it is the Minnesota Statutes. Use the official abbreviation, which is "Minn. Stat." Be aware that there is a period after each abbreviation, and there is a space between each abbreviation. 
 

Section Number: § 321.0101-1208

Next, add the section number of the statute. Before the section number, add the section symbol (§). Then, add the first section number, a hyphen, and the last section number. Do not add a period after the section numbers. NOTE: You can find the symbol for section numbers in Word by following these steps: click on the "Insert" tab, then "Symbol," then "More Symbols," and then "Special Characters."
 

Year: (2001 & rev. 2004).

Next, add the year the statute was codified in the state statutes. This statute was first codified in 2001. It was then revised in 2004. After the date the statute was first codified, add an ampersand (&), then the abbreviation for revised (rev.), and then the date it was revised. 
 

URL: https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/cite/321

Complete the reference with the web address (URL) where the act can be found. For most course papers, you will want to remove the hyperlink from the URL. Additionally, do not add a period after the URL. NOTE: Check your instructor's preference for live hyperlinks. In general, if the assignment is an online assignment (e.g., Blackboard discussion, webpage, etc.), then keep the live hyperlinks. If the assignment is a paper, then remove the hyperlinks.  
 

More Information:

For more information about state statutes, see Section 11.5 on pages 361-363 and example 13 on page 363 of the APA Manual, 7th edition. 

 

Parenthetical & Narrative Citation Examples

 

Parenthetical Citation Example

(Uniform Limited Partnership Act, 2001/2004)

Narrative Citation Example

The Uniform Limited Partnership Act (2001/2004) set up ...

 

More Information:

For more information about author format in parenthetical and narrative citations, see Section 8.17 and Table 8.1 on page 266 of the APA Manual, 7th edition. 

Federal

Example

 

Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993, 29 U.S.C. § 2601-2654 (2006). 

https://uscode.house.gov/view.xhtml?path=/prelim@title29/chapter28&edition=prelim

 

Explanation

 

Name of the Act: Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993,

Begin the reference with the name of the act. Capitalize all majors words in the title of the act. After the title of the act, add a comma.
 

Title Number: 29

Next, add the title number where the act can be found. Title numbers identify the subject matter for the statute. 
 

Source: U.S.C.

Next, add the official source for federal statutes, which is the United States Code. Use the official abbreviation, which is "U.S.C." Be aware that there are no spaces between each letter of the abbreviation and there is a period after each letter. 
 

Section Number(s): §§ 2601-2654

Next, add the section number of the statute. Before the section number, add the section symbol (§). Many statutes are divided into multiple sections and subsections. If the act you are referring to has more than one section, add two section symbols before first section number. Then, add the first section number, a hyphen, and the last section number. Do not add a period after the section numbers. NOTE: You can find the symbol for section numbers in Word by following these steps: click on the "Insert" tab, then "Symbol," then "More Symbols," and then "Special Characters."
 

Year: (2006).

Next, add the year the statute was codified in the United States Code. 
 

URL: https://uscode.house.gov/view.xhtml?path=/prelim@title29/chapter28&edition=prelimhttps://uscode.house.gov/view.xhtml?path=/prelim@title29/chapter28&edition=prelim

Complete the reference with the web address (URL) where the act can be found. For most course papers, you will want to remove the hyperlink from the URL. Additionally, do not add a period after the URL. NOTE: Check your instructor's preference for live hyperlinks. In general, if the assignment is an online assignment (e.g., Blackboard discussion, webpage, etc.), then keep the live hyperlinks. If the assignment is a paper, then remove the hyperlinks.  
 

More Information:

For more information about statutes, see Section 11.5 on pages 361-363 and examples 8-12 on pages 362-363 of the APA Manual, 7th edition. 

 

Parenthetical & Narrative Citation Examples

 

Parenthetical Citation Example

(Family & Medical Leave Act of 1993, 2006)

Narrative Citation Example

Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (2006) established ...

 

More Information:

For more information about author format within parenthetical and narrative citations, see Section 8.17 and Table 8.1 on page 266 of the APA Manual, 7th edition.