Bluebooking for Beginners. Kelli Amanda Metzger Knerr. Bluepages v. Whitepages. Bluepages are used for non-academic citations and are within the text. This includes memos and briefs Whitepages are used for academic citations and are located in footnotes or endnotes.
Bluebooking for Beginners
Kelli Amanda Metzger Knerr
Bluepages v. Whitepages
Bluepages are used for non-academic citations and are within the text.
This includes memos and briefs
Whitepages are used for academic citations and are located in footnotes or endnotes.
This includes law reviews and journals
For your 1L class, you will be using the bluepages.
For the law review write-on competition in May, you will be using the whitepages.
Bluepages v. Whitepages Continued
The Bluebook is really written for law review (hence the large number of whitepages vs. bluepages).
Quick Reference for Whitepages: Inside front cover
Quick Reference for Bluepages: Inside back cover – your hero.
Backcover has a “table of contents.”
When in doubt: Excellent Index (using common sense terms)
Major difference is formatting and font changes
Underline or Italicize (just be consistent)
Case names (including procedural phrases – In re)
Titles of books and articles
Cross References (i.e. Id and Supra)
Words and phrases introducing related authority (i.e. “quoted in”)
Never use large and small caps (used in Law Review only)
Unless local rules dictate otherwise, citations are:
within the text of the document
as full sentences
or as clauses directly after the proposition they supports
Use footnotes only when permitted by local court rules.
Five basic components
Name of the case
Published source in which the case can be found
Parenthetical indicating the court and year of decision
Other parenthetical information, if any
Subsequent history of the case, if any
Ex: Holland v. Donnelly, 216 F. Supp. 2d 227, 243 (S.D.N.Y. 2002) (“[W]here the state courts have rejected a constitutional claim, a habeas court may not grant relief simply because it believes constitutional error has been committed.”), aff’d, 324 F.3d 99 (2d Cir. 2003).
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
Holland v. Donnelly, 216 F. Supp. 2d 227, 243 (S.D.N.Y. 2002)
1) First party
2) v. = versus (no s . . . This isn’t baseball).
3) Second party
4) Reporter Volume Number
5) Reporter Abbreviation
6) First page of case
7) Pinpoint citation or Pincite (specific page citing to)
9) Year of decision
Cases – Cont.
Begins with a capital letter and ends with a period.
Use to cite sources and authorities that relate to the entire preceding sentence
If citing multiple cases in one citation sentence (string citation), separate with a semi-colon.
Set off from the text by commas and immediately follow the proposition to which they relate.
Do not begin with a capital letter unless the clause begins with a source that would be capitalized.
Use to cite sources and authorities that relate to only part of a sentence.
Cases – Case Name
If there are multiple parties on each side of the “v” omit all other than the first listed on each side.
If the party is an individual, use only the surname.
Omit et al or alternative names.
Abbreviate words and geographical units pursuant to Tables T6 and T10 (unless the geographical unit is a named party).
I.e. Commonwealth of Virginia v. Univ. of Fla.
Never abbreviate United States if it is a named party
Words of eight or more letters may be abbreviate if the result is unambiguous and substantial space is saved.
The comma after the case name should not be underlined/italicized.
Cases – Pincites
Pincites tell the reader the exact page of the information or quotation.
Pincites are placed after the page in which the case report begins, separated by a comma and one space. Use a pincite even when it is the first page.
What happens when the information is on more than one page?
Indicate the first and last page separated by a dash. If the page is three or more digits, drop repetitive digits other than the final two.
Exs: 96-98; 1020-26
Multiple non-consecutive pages
List each page, separated by a comma and one space
Ex: 103, 106, 132
Give the page on which the footnote appears, “n.,” and the footnote number with no space between the “n.” and the footnote number
Ex: 199 n.4
Cases – Court
When citing decisions of the United States Supreme Court or the highest court of any individual state, do not include the name of the deciding court.
Use T1 for the abbreviation to courts in all major U.S. jurisdictions
State abbreviations can be found in T10. Note: These are not always the same as a postal abbreviations!
Spacing: Do not include a space between adjacent single capital letters (S.D.N.Y.). Do include a space between a single capital letter and a longer abbreviation (D. Conn.). Individual numbers are treated as single capitals (A.2d).
Some professors (and local rules) require parallel citations (i.e. a citation to both the official state reporter and the unofficial regional and/or state-specific reporter). Be sure to include a pincite for each reporter.
Cases only on LexisNexis or Westlaw
If a case is unreported but available on Lexis or Westlaw, include the case name, docket number, database identifier, court name, and full date of the most recent major disposition of the case.
Ex: Silver v. Primero Reorganized Sch. Dist. No. 2, No. 06-cv-02088-MSK-BNB, 2007 WL 2422156, at *2 (D. Colo. Aug. 22, 2007).
Page numbers, if assigned, should be preceded by an asterisk, however, all other pincite rules apply.
Case Short Citation
Palsgraf, 162 N.E. at 100.
Use the first party’s name unless too common or the party is the United States.
Id. at 100
Note: The period is underlined/italicized!
Id. is only capitalized when it begins a citation sentence, not a citation clause.
Refers to immediately preceding citation when immediately preceding citation has one source.
The most common signals you will use in your first-year legal writing course are “no signal” and “see.”
No signal – the citation sentence or clause contains no introductory signal when it:
(1) directly states the proposition preceding it,
(2) is the source of a direct quotation, or
(3) identifies an authority referred to in the text.
If your authority does not meet any of these requirements, you must provide a signal prior to your cite.
See – the citation sentence or clause clearly supports the proposition.
The difference between “no signal” and “see” is one of degree.
You use “see” when the authority does not directly state the proposition but the proposition is obviously supported by the source.
Signals – Cont.
Signals are a monster!
Capitalize when used to begin a citation sentence; lowercase when used to begin a citation clause.
When more than one is used, put them in the order listed in rule 1.2.
When in doubt, see Rule 1.2.
Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and
Liability Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 9601-9675 (2006).
1) Official name of the act. Do not use if only citing one section.
2) Published source in which the act may be found
3) § symbol. Use one if one section, use two if multiple sections.
4) Section(s) referencing
5) Parenthetical of year published (code citations) or year statute passed (citations to session laws). (Note: U.S.C. is only published every six years. Citations to U.S.C. should be the codifying year, i.e. 2000, 2006).
If the year is included in the name of the statute, the year parenthetical is omitted (see page 16).
If citing an annotated version, include the publisher in the parenthetical i.e. (West 1999).
Statute – Short Cite
42 U.S.C. § 1983.
Drop the year parenthetical and name (if any)
Only if in immediately preceding citation.
Citing the Record
When writing a statement of facts, you will need to cite the documents from which you got your facts.
Name of the document
Use Table BT1 to find abbreviations
Ex: “Record” become “R.”
Never use an abbreviation if it will confuse the reader
The pinpoint citation
Date of the document, if required.
Enclose the citation in parenthesis.
If it is a citation sentence, place the period inside the parenthesis. If it is a citation clause that ends the sentence, place the period outside the parenthesis.
Citing the Record – Cont.
Ex: (Mot. to Quash Subpoena ¶¶ 2, 3, 4, 6, Feb. 23, 2009.)
Can use a “short cite” after having a full cite as long as it is clear to the reader. Ex: (Mot. ¶ 8.)
I.e. (Smith Dep. 27:4-28:2, Feb.5, 2001.) becomes (Smith Dep. 30:4-18.)
For Court documents, only use id. if significant space will be saved.
Page references should not be proceeded by “p.”, but other subdivisions should be recognized (such as footnotes).
You do not need to precede pincites with “at”, although sometimes it is customary, such as when citing the record.
Provide the date when more than one such document bears the same title, the date of the document is significant to the discussion, OR as needed to avoid confusion.
Citing the Record - Examples
The witness ran down the street(Compl. ¶ 7) and saw the defendant steal the television (Knerr Aff. ¶ 15).
(Charge to the Grand Jury, 4, Jan. 26, 2009; Letter to Governor Rogers, Feb. 2, 2009.)
(Pet’r’s Br. 6.)
(R. at 9.)
(Toms Aff. ¶ 2, June 2, 2003.)
(Toms Aff. ¶5, October 15, 2004.)