Case law and journal citations are made up of the abbreviation for the case report series or journal.
To find the unabbreviated case report series or journal title you can look at a number of different sources:
Raistrick's Index to Legal Citations and Abbreviations
Thomson Reuters' Firstpoint Table of Abbreviations
The Australian Guide to Legal Citation (ALGC) Referencing Guide
The La Trobe University Legal Abbreviations Database
The essence of a case citation for a report series is:
Parties' names + year + volume (if any) + series abbreviation + starting page number +, pinpoint reference.
The notes listed here are not exhaustive, but are designed to point students to the pertinent sections of the Australian Guide to Legal Citation. AGLC rule 2 details the requirements for citing cases.
Where parties to a case are individuals, given names and initials should be omitted (AGLC rule 2.1.1).
Where there are many parties to the case, only the first named plaintiff and defendant should be included in the citation and the abbreviations & Anor and & Ors should not be used (AGLC rule 2.1.1).
AGLC rule 2.1 deals exhaustively with the requirement for citing party names including business names, states' names, the Crown, government departments and Ministers (AGLC rules 2.1.2 – 2.1.7).
AGLC rule 2.1 also details how cases including Re, Ex parte, and ex rel in the party names should be cited (AGLC rules 2.1.9 -2.1.10).
A ‘ v ’ should separate the parties’ names and it should be italicised and not followed by a full stop. In speech, the ‘v’ is spoken as ‘and’ in civil cases and ‘against’ in criminal cases (AGLC rule 2.1.11).
AGLC rule 2.2.7 states that parallel citations should not be used for Australian cases.
AGLC rule 2.1.13 specifies that where there are multiple proceedings between the parties, the number of the decision should appear in square brackets, if it appears in the case name itself. This rule applies equally for unreported judgments.
Where the case report series is organised by volume, the year of the report being cited appears in round brackets, and where it is organised by year, the year of the report being cited appears in square brackets (AGLC rule 2.2.1).
The abbreviation of the law report series should adhere to AGLC rule 2.2.3, and use the abbreviations which appear in the appendix to the AGLC.
The first page of the report should appear after the abbreviated form of the case series (AGLC rule 2.2.4).
A 'pinpoint' refers to a specific page or paragraph to which a reference is being made. Pinpoint references should appear after the start page and be preceded by a comma and a space.
Where the report is paginated, the pinpoint should be to a page number. If paragraph numbers are also present, the paragraph number may be included in addition, in square brackets (AGLC rule 2.2.5).
The essence of a case citation for an unreported judgment in medium neutral format is:
Parties' names + [Year of publication] + Unique court identifier + Judgment number + (Full date) + [Pinpoint].
The notes listed here are not exhaustive, but are designed to point students to the pertinent sections of the Australian Guide to Legal Citation. AGLC Part 2.3 details the requirements for citing cases.
The same rules apply for citing parties' names in a medium neutral format as for a citation from a report series.
AGLC rule 2.1.13 specifies that where there are multiple proceedings between the parties, the number of the decision should appear in square brackets, if it appears in the case name itself (see the example above, where [No 2] appears in the case name). This rule applies equally for reported judgments.
AGLC rule 2.3.1 details how decisions with medium neutral citations should be cited. The preferred unique court identifiers for the superior courts are listed at this rule.
The judgment number follows the unique court identifier, followed by the full date in parenthesis and the pinpoint, which will be to a paragraph number, appears in square brackets (AGLC rule 2.3.1).