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University of Wollongong Australia

Referencing: Legal Publications

Author-Date (Harvard) - Legal Publications

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Format In-Text Reference Reference List

Legal Cases

The following details are required for in-text and reference citations:

  • the name of the case
  • the year or volume number, or both
  • the page on which the report of the case begins

The name of the case is italicised.

The year is enclosed in parentheses. Square brackets are used when there is no volume number and the year is an integral part of the title, i.e. square brackets indicate that the year of publication is the volume number.

If you are referring to a particular page of the judgment, include a ‘pinpoint reference’ to the actual page in the in-text citation. Use the word ‘at’ instead of p.

Do not include URLs for cases found online.


Direct quote

The judge in R v Ramage (2004) VSC 508 stated the "The Court cannot allow…"


In the case of Mabo v. Queensland (no. 2) (1992) 175 CLR1, it was...

The case, Jones v. Sherlock (2009) NSWSC 246 showed that…

In Northern Sandblasting Pty Ltd v. Harris (1997) 188 CLR 313 at 334 the High Court held that the landlord was in breach of a contractual duty of care owed to the tenants and to their family.

R v. Ramage (2004) VSC 508

Chappel v Hart [1998] HCA 55

Mabo v. Queensland (no. 2) (1992) 175 CLR1.

Jones v. Sherlock (2009) NSWSC 246.

Northern Sandblasting Pty Ltd v. Harris (1997) 188 CLR 313.


Legislation should be referenced as if in print even if viewed electronically








Most legislation has a short formal title that can be used for citation purposes. The first in-text reference to an Act or Ordinance should cite the short formal title, in italics, exactly and in full.


In subsequent references the title can be shown in roman type without the date.


Do not place a comma between the title and the year.


If the name of the legislation begins with an article (eg. a, an, the) do not omit the article in the citation.


First in-text reference:

In relation to action regarding unsuitable goods, s. 74B of the Trade Practices Act 1974 states…

Subsequent in-text reference/s:

According to the Trade Practices Act…

Example of an act beginning with an article:

The Commonwealth’s A New Tax System (Wine Equalisation Tax) Act 1999 makes provision for...

Trade Practices Act 1974 (Cwlth).


Bills before parliament are ‘unpublished’ and should be cited in roman type not italics.


In the Companion Animals Amendment Bill 2006 (NSW) there is provision for.... Companion Animals Amendment Bill 2006 (NSW).

Patents & Standards




For patents the title may be more of a descriptive title rather than a formal title Identifying elements such as patent numbers should be included If no individual author is available, a corporate author can be used in the in-text reference.



The particle trap design is... (Cookson 1985)

Cookson, AH 1985, Particle trap for compressed gas insulated transmission systems, US Patent 4554399.

Mccallum, JM 2008, Method for and composition of excipient suitable for use in herbal formulations and formulations derived therefrom, Australian Patent AU 2008100919, viewed 8 December 2008, SciFinder Scholar.


For standards not retrieved from an electronic database, replace online database information with publisher information.

Direct quote

The rule from Standards Australia (2009, p. 23) is: "[a]n adhesive label..."


...stated that glass in buildings must be... (Standards Australia Online 2006)


Standards Australia 2009, LP Gas fuel vessels for automotive use, AS/NZS 3509:2009, Standards Australia, Sydney.

Standards Australia Online 2006, Glass in buildings: selection and installations, AS 1288-2006, amended 31 January 2008, viewed 19 May 2009, SAI Global Database