Skip to main content
University of Newcastle Library guides

MLA Style:  Govt documents

UON Library guide to MLA referencing style 8th edition for UON students

General Rules and Examples

Government documents & reports

 

General Notes:

  • Cite government documents or reports under the departments, units or agencies (i.e. 'corporate authors'), followed by the title of the document/report. 

  • The publisher and author should be recorded as they appeared when the document was originally published. Do not amend the name to their current title if the names have changed.

  • Government document titles appear in italics.

  • Include report or paper numbers (if available).

  • Include the publisher if it is different from the author.

  • Include only the first place of publication if more than one is listed.

  • Some government documents may be assigned a DOI or "digital object identifier". If this is the case the DOI must be added to the reference. If no DOI is found, then the URL of the online publication site is included. Check What are DOIs? for more information.

Government documents and reports

 

The following is the general format of a reference to a government document or report. 

Add a DOI or URL to the end of the citation for documents located online.

See general rules for government documents for more details. 

 

In-text citation: format and example

... (Name of Government Agency Page/s cited) ...

... (Centre for Epidemiology and Evidence 7) ...

... (U.S. Government Accountability Office 8) ...

 

Works-cited list entry: format and example

Name of Government Agency. Document Title: Subtitle. Document No. Publisher, Year, DOI or URL.

Centre for Epidemiology and Evidence. NSW Mothers and Babies Report 2016. NSW Health, 2017, www.health.nsw.gov.au/hsnsw/Publications/mothers-and-babies-2016.pdf.

Air Force Readiness: Actions Needed to Rebuild Readiness and Prepare for the Future. GAO-19-120T. U.S. Government Accountability Office, 10 Oct. 2018, www.gao.gov/products/GAO-19-120T.

Legal references

 

Legal references are usually cited in the text or in footnotes, not in the works-cited list. 

MLA recommends using The Bluebook  for citing legal documents - including cases, constitutions, and statutes. The Bluebook is used in the United States. Australian students should follow the AGLC for citing legal materials. Please note that both the Bluebook and the AGLC use footnotes instead of parenthetical in-text citations. 

The following citation format and examples for LegislationCases, and Parliamentary Debates, are mainly based on the AGLC 4th ed.

If the item cited is consulted online from an official source, add the URL to the end of the citation.

 

Legislation

  • Legislation includes Acts, Bills, Regulations, Rules and other forms of legislation. Acts are the most commonly cited form of legislation.
  • The pinpoint section number is optional. If you are referring to the Act as a whole, omit the section number. If you are referring to or quoting particular sections, include the section number(s), e.g., s 8.1 - point 1 within section 8.
  • If you have already cited an Act, the next time you refer to that Act you can omit the year and jurisdiction.
  • Bills should be cited the same way as Acts, except the title and year should not be italicised. 'Clause' and sub-clause' are usually the appropriate pinpoint designations. 

 

Footnote: Format and example

Note Number. Short Title of Act Year of Act (Jurisdiction) pinpoint.

1. Family Law Act 1975 (Cth) ss 5-6.

2. Evidence Act 1995 (NSW) ss 47.

3. Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme Bill 2009 (Cth), cl 83.

4. Habeas Corpus Act 2001 (NZ) s 3.

 

Shortened / Subsequent Footnote

Note Number. Short Title of Act pinpoint.

5. Evidence Act  s 3.

 

Works-cited list

Legal references are usually cited in the text or in footnotes, not in the works-cited list. If a works-cited list entry is needed, cite the act/bill with or without the sections as needed.

Short Title of Act Year of Act (Jurisdiction). 

Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme Bill 2009 (Cth).

Evidence Act 1995 (NSW). 

Family Law Act 1975 (Cth).

Habeas Corpus Act 2001 (NZ).

 

Cases

 

A citation of an Australian case should include the parties' names in italics, followed by the year of the report, volume number of the law report series, the abbreviation of the law report series, the starting page of the case, and the pinpoint page number/s if needed. 

Subsequent references usually use full case citations. 

The case name should be omitted in a footnote citation if the case name appears in full in the sentence accompanying the footnotes, see the first example below.

 

Footnote: Format and example

Note Number. Case Name (Year) Volume No Law Report Series Starting page, pinpoint page.

1. Alati v Kruger (1955) 94 CLR 216, 218. 

2. Kemp v The King (1951) 83 CLR 341, 342.

3. Wentworth v Rogers [No 5] (1986) 6 NSWLR 534.

 

Works-cited list

Legal references are usually cited in the text or in footnotes, not in the works-cited list. If a works-cited list entry is needed, cite the case with or without the pinpoint pages as needed.

Case Name (Year) Volume No Law Report Series Starting page

Alati v Kruger (1955) 94 CLR 216. 

Kemp v The King (1951) 83 CLR 341.

Wentworth v Rogers [No 5] (1986) NSWLR 534.

‚Äč

Parliamentary debates (Hansard)

 

A citation of Parliamentary debates (or Hansard) should include the Jurisdiction, followed by Parliamentary Debates, then Chamber, Full Date of Debate, Pinpoint, and Name of Speaker. 

 

Footnote: Format and example

Note Number. Jurisdiction, Parliamentary Debates, Chamber, Full Date of Debate, Pinpoint (Name of Speaker).

1. Commonwealth, Parliamentary Debates, Senate, 18 June 2008, 2642-4 (Bob Brown).

2. New South Wales, Parliamentary Debates, Legislative Assembly, 8 August 2018, 18 (Melinda Pavey, Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight).

 

Works-cited

Legal references are usually cited in the text or in footnotes, not in the works-cited list. If a works-cited list entry is needed, cite the Hansard with or without the pinpoint pages as needed.

Jurisdiction, Parliamentary Debates, Chamber, Full Date of Debate, Pinpoint (Name of Speaker). 

Commonwealth, Parliamentary Debates, Senate, 18 June 2008, 2642-4 (Bob Brown).

New South Wales, Parliamentary Debates, Legislative Assembly, 8 August 2018, 18 (Melinda Pavey, Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight).

 

Ask The Library

Ask The Library