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How to cite US cases? (newbie question)

Posted: Thu Mar 12, 2015 10:43 pm
by bitsteve
Im wanting to cite from the Alice v CLS 2014 case (US Supreme court) in one of my assignments but not sure how to cite it as im not from the US so not sure. I cant seem to find the official reported version, only a s.CT version which seems to be an unofficial report. Theres a 'slip opinion' online here:

http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/13 ... 8_7lh8.pdf)

Should I cite the slip opinion or s.CT? If I should cite the slip opinion, how would I cite a quote from the slip opinion (for example "the mere recitation of a generic computer cannot transform a patent-ineligible abstract idea into a patent-eligible invention." on page 13 of slip opinion? Cheers All!

Re: How to cite US cases? (newbie question)

Posted: Thu Mar 12, 2015 11:08 pm
by 052220152
i just go on westlaw and right click "copy with citation" hope that helps man

Re: How to cite US cases? (newbie question)

Posted: Thu Mar 12, 2015 11:11 pm
by Robb
cite the s. ct. i think, u.s. often isn't available for recent opinions b/c the reporter hasn't been published yet

Re: How to cite US cases? (newbie question)

Posted: Thu Mar 12, 2015 11:22 pm
by bitsteve
Im just worried Ill be penalised for using unofficial reporter? For example in the actual Alice case, they cite bilski v kappos slip opinion aswell instead of the s.CT?

Re: How to cite US cases? (newbie question)

Posted: Thu Mar 12, 2015 11:28 pm
by lacrossebrother
1. citation rules are arbitrary and custom. We use the bluebook for most legal citations in the us for law reviews and shit sent to courts

2. Your custom abroad might be completely different.

3. If you look at at the opinion, you noticed that fucking SCOTUS can't cite official reporters for certain recent decisions because they don't exist.

4. If you want to be a turd you can indicate that the official reporter is unavailable by citing it blankly
5. Alice Corp. Pty. Ltd. v. CLS Bank Int'l, U.S. , 134 S. Ct. 2347, 2358 (2014) ("your quote here that is legit on 2358").

Re: How to cite US cases? (newbie question)

Posted: Thu Mar 12, 2015 11:54 pm
by bitsteve
lacrossebrother wrote:1. citation rules are arbitrary and custom. We use the bluebook for most legal citations in the us for law reviews and shit sent to courts

2. Your custom abroad might be completely different.

3. If you look at at the opinion, you noticed that fucking SCOTUS can't cite official reporters for certain recent decisions because they don't exist.

4. If you want to be a turd you can indicate that the official reporter is unavailable by citing it blankly
5. Alice Corp. Pty. Ltd. v. CLS Bank Int'l, U.S. , 134 S. Ct. 2347, 2358 (2014) ("your quote here that is legit on 2358").


Thanks I really appreciate the reply, got three questions:

1. if I wanted to cite the slip opinion - how would I?
2. Im looking for Bilski v Kappos 561 US 593, I found a version on westlaw, but it says on top of each page "(Cite as: 561 U.S. 593, 130 S.Ct. 3218)" Why not just cite 561 U.S. 593?
3. if it was an phd assignment would a slip opinion or s.CT (if no official available) be preferred or would it make no difference?

Re: How to cite US cases? (newbie question)

Posted: Fri Mar 13, 2015 12:12 am
by lacrossebrother
It's kind of silly to cite to a slip opinion once the s.ct. is available. It's unofficial but probably more widely available than even u.s. Reporters.

You should just buy a bluebook online if you really are interested in legal citation. And I have no idea about phd.
If you insist on citing to slip opinions, look at the example here:
http://www.lib.jjay.cuny.edu/research/q ... alcite.pdf

In terms of "why not do just u.s."--you should just do u.s. My understanding was there was a an unsuccessful push for parallel cites (multiple citations) at some point but that fad died hard.

Re: How to cite US cases? (newbie question)

Posted: Fri Mar 13, 2015 12:30 am
by ditch digger
bitsteve wrote:
lacrossebrother wrote:1. citation rules are arbitrary and custom. We use the bluebook for most legal citations in the us for law reviews and shit sent to courts

2. Your custom abroad might be completely different.

3. If you look at at the opinion, you noticed that fucking SCOTUS can't cite official reporters for certain recent decisions because they don't exist.

4. If you want to be a turd you can indicate that the official reporter is unavailable by citing it blankly
5. Alice Corp. Pty. Ltd. v. CLS Bank Int'l, U.S. , 134 S. Ct. 2347, 2358 (2014) ("your quote here that is legit on 2358").


Thanks I really appreciate the reply, got three questions:

1. if I wanted to cite the slip opinion - how would I?

2. Im looking for Bilski v Kappos 561 US 593, I found a version on westlaw, but it says on top of each page "(Cite as: 561 U.S. 593, 130 S.Ct. 3218)" Why not just cite 561 U.S. 593?
3. if it was an phd assignment would a slip opinion or s.CT (if no official available) be preferred or would it make no difference?

Re: How to cite US cases? (newbie question)

Posted: Fri Mar 13, 2015 12:48 am
by ditch digger
bitsteve wrote:Thanks I really appreciate the reply, got three questions:

1. if I wanted to cite the slip opinion - how would I?
2. Im looking for Bilski v Kappos 561 US 593, I found a version on westlaw, but it says on top of each page "(Cite as: 561 U.S. 593, 130 S.Ct. 3218)" Why not just cite 561 U.S. 593?
3. if it was an phd assignment would a slip opinion or s.CT (if no official available) be preferred or would it make no difference?


1. You would cite it like this: Groucho Marx Prods. v. Playboy Enters., No. 77 Civ. 1782 (S.D.N.Y) (Dec. 30, 1977).

2. You should cite to U.S., but if there is no U.S. to be found, cite to S. Ct., if no S. Ct. then L. Ed. or U.S.L.W.

3. Cite the latest case out there. If the slip opinion is replaced by an official opinion, then cite that opinion.


Try investing in a Bluebook if you're going to encounter this shit a lot.

Re: How to cite US cases? (newbie question)

Posted: Fri Mar 13, 2015 1:38 pm
by bitsteve
ditch digger wrote:
bitsteve wrote:Thanks I really appreciate the reply, got three questions:

1. if I wanted to cite the slip opinion - how would I?
2. Im looking for Bilski v Kappos 561 US 593, I found a version on westlaw, but it says on top of each page "(Cite as: 561 U.S. 593, 130 S.Ct. 3218)" Why not just cite 561 U.S. 593?
3. if it was an phd assignment would a slip opinion or s.CT (if no official available) be preferred or would it make no difference?


1. You would cite it like this: Groucho Marx Prods. v. Playboy Enters., No. 77 Civ. 1782 (S.D.N.Y) (Dec. 30, 1977).

2. You should cite to U.S., but if there is no U.S. to be found, cite to S. Ct., if no S. Ct. then L. Ed. or U.S.L.W.

3. Cite the latest case out there. If the slip opinion is replaced by an official opinion, then cite that opinion.


Try investing in a Bluebook if you're going to encounter this shit a lot.


Sorry just confirming definitely cite s.CT instead of slip then if US not avail? Thanks

Re: How to cite US cases? (newbie question)

Posted: Thu Mar 19, 2015 5:48 pm
by 3|ink
Jim Jones wrote:i just go on westlaw and right click "copy with citation" hope that helps man

That actually gets the bluebooking wrong every time.

Re: How to cite US cases? (newbie question)

Posted: Tue Feb 14, 2017 1:41 pm
by Wowser
Mod edit: spam