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Legal Citation Principles


During the writing of any legal document, other sources or documents of authorities have to be always referred to. These are called as legal citations. Every legal citation has to come under one of the following categories of citation principles.

  • Case citation
  • Legislative citation
  • Treaty citation
  • Government document citation
  • Law periodical citation

Case citations are used by the common law countries to find the location of past court cases. The citation standard varies from country to country. Following is the list of citation standards used by the respective countries.

  • AGLC – Australian guide to legal Citation available at
  • Statutory Instruments Practice – United Kingdom
  • McGill Guide – Canadian
  • ALWD Citation Manual / Bluebook – USA
  • Leidraad – Dutch

Law professional always have to decorate their arguments with good legal citations that usually include supporting references to statutes, regulations, and prior appellate decisions besides secondary reference like treatises, restatements, and journal articles. Legal citation writing is a form of technical writing in itself that is a little difficult to master. In the USA, the ALWD Citation Manual: A Professional System of Citation (3d ed. 2006) made by the Association of Legal Writing Directors is well accepted in all law schools.

Managed Outsource Solutions (MOS) is a US based legal outsourcing company that offers a wide range of legal services like legal research, litigation support, legal documentation, legal transcription, legal animation, legal web design and legal consultation services to clients in the UK, the US, Canada and Australia.

About Rajeev R

Rajeev R

Manages the day-to-day operations of MOS from NY. With an interest in information technology, Rajeev has guided MOS to extensive use of digital technology and the internet that benefits MOS as well as MOS clients.