How to Cite a Law in APA 7th Edition

Citing a law in APA 7th edition is easy. Just use the following template: (Author, date).

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How to cite a law in APA 7th edition

In APA 7th edition, the general format for citing a law is as follows:

Title of law (Year, Jurisdiction abbreviation).

For example:

The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA; 42 U.S.C. [section] 12101 et seq.)

In this example, “42 U.S.C.” is the abbreviation for the United States Code, and “[section]” is the symbol for a section of the code.

What is APA 7th edition?

APA 7th edition is the most recent edition of the APA Publication Manual. This manual provides guidance on how to format research papers, cite sources, and create reference lists.

How to format your law citation

Citing a law in APA 7th edition is done in two parts. The first part is the citation for the source where you found the law, and the second part is the citation for the specific law itself.

To format your law citation, start with the name of the source (for example, “United States Code”). Follow this with a comma, then “Title,” and finally the section number of the law you are citing. If there is more than one section, separate them with a semicolon. Finally, include the date that you accessed the law.

Here is an example:

United States Code, Title 42, Section 1983; Date accessed: October 15, 2020

The elements of a law citation

To cite a law, you will need to include the name of the case, the date the case was decided, the volume and reporter where it can be found, and finally the page number on which it appears. Here is an example:

Brown v. Board of Education, 347 U.S. 483 (1954).

If you are referencing a statute, you will need to include the title and section number of the statute, as well as the name of the code in which it is found. Here is an example:

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. 2000e (1964).

How to find the right law to cite

When you’re writing a paper using APA 7th edition style, you may need to cite a law. But how do you find the right law to cite? Here are some tips:

First, identify the jurisdiction. Is the law from the United States federal government, a particular state, or another country?

Second, identify the level of the court. For laws from the United States federal government, this will usually be either the U.S. Supreme Court or a lower federal court. For laws from a particular state, this will usually be either the state’s highest court or a lower state court.

Third, identify the specific law you need to cite. For laws from the United States federal government, this will usually be either a statute (from the U.S. Code) or a regulation (from the Code of Federal Regulations). For laws from a particular state, this will usually be either a statute (from the State Code) or a regulation (from the State Administrative Code).

Once you’ve identified all of these elements, you can use them to find the specific law you need to cite using one of the many available legal research databases.

How to use secondary sources in your law citation

If you are using a secondary source in your law citation, you will need to use the abbreviation “Sec.” followed by the section number. For example, if you are referencing the first section of a bill, you would write “Sec. 1” in your citation.

The different types of law you can cite

There are four types of law you can cite using APA 7th edition: constitutions, statutes, cases, and secondary sources.

Constitutions: The full citation for a constitution includes the name of the country or state, the date, and the number (if available).
Example:
U.S. Const. amend. XIV, sec. 1 (1868).

Statutes: The full citation for a statute includes the name of the country or state, the title and section number (if available), and the date.
Example:
42 U.S.C.A. sec. 1983 (2020).

Cases: The full citation for a case includes the name of the court, the case name, and the date.
Example:
Brown v. Board of Education, 347 U.S. 483 (1954).

Secondary sources: The full citation for a secondary source includes the author’s last name and initials, the date, and the page number (if available).
Example:
Lastname F., & Lastname L. (2020).

How to cite a law in a paper

There are a few different ways to cite a law in APA 7th edition. The easiest way is to use the online APA citation generator, which will automatically format the citation for you.

If you want to cite a law manually, you will need to include the name of the law, the date of enactment, and the URL of the official website where the law can be found. For example:

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (20 U.S.C. ¤ 1681), enacted on July 1, 1974, 20 U.S.C. ¤ 1681 (2015), https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/tix_dis.html

How to cite a law in a presentation

When you are citing a law, you will want to include the name of the law and the section number. You will also want to include the date that the law was enacted.

Here is an example of how you would cite a law in APA 7th edition:

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which was enacted in 1990, prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life (42 U.S.C. & 12101).

How to cite a law in an essay

There are a few different ways that you can cite a law in your essay, depending on what type of law it is and where you found it.

If you are citing a federal law, you will need to include the name of the act, the section number, and the year that the act was passed. For example:

The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA) entitles eligible employees of covered employers to take unpaid, job-protected leave for certain family and medical reasons (29 U.S.C. 2601 et seq., 1993).

If you are citing a state law, you will need to include the name of the state, the section number, and the year that the law was passed. For example:

The California Family Rights Act of 1991 (CFRA) makes it unlawful for an employer to refuse to grant a request for leave to an eligible employee for specified family and medical reasons (Cal. Gov’t Code 12945.2, 1991).

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