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Legal Citation

Tips and tricks for starting out with the Bluebook, ALWD, or other legal citation guide.

The Bluebook

The Bluebook contains three major parts:

  1. Bluepages
    How-to guide for basic legal citation
  2. Rules (white pages)
    • Rules 1-9
      General standards
    • Rules 10-21
      Specific authorities, e.g. cases
  3. Tables (blue stripe)
    Authorities, abbreviations, etc.

This guide contains select examples of Bluebook formatting. Other examples can be found in the official Bluebook® Quick Start Guide.

Rule / Table Pages Description
B2 6-7 Typeface conventions for court documents and legal memoranda
R1.2-1.4 62-65 Introductory signals, order of signals, and order of authorities within signals
R4 79-82 Short citation forms (i.e., citing materials previously cited)
R5 83-86 Formatting quotations
R10 95-116 Citing cases
R11 119-120 Citing constitutions
R12 120-134 Citing statutes
R14 142-146 Citing regulations and administrative materials
R18 174-186 Citing electronic sources and Internet sources
T1 227-298 Preferred U.S. federal and state sources and abbreviations
T6 304-307 Abbreviations for case names