Referencing legislation


Formoredetailedguidelines,seeFrench,D. (1996).HowtoCiteLegalAuthorities.

London: Blackstone, orThe Oxford Standard for Citation of Legal Authorities(found at

However, here are afewexamplesofciting andreferencing UK andEU legislation using the Harvard Style:

UK Acts of Parliament (Statutes)

TheseareActspassedbyParliament,whicheventuallyreceiveroyalassentand become law. You would normally list the source in the full reference, as follows:

·Title of Act and year

·The part (pt) and section (s),and/or

·The schedule (sch) and section (s)

Citation: (Data Protection Act 1998)

Reference: Data Protection Act 1998. pt 1, s2.

Note:theyear:1998,doesnotappearinbracketsinthereference,asthedateis part of the title.

Forolderstatutes,theOxfordStandard suggestsitcanbehelpfultogivethe appropriate regnal year and chapter number, e.g. Crown Debts Act 1801 (14 Geo 3 c 90),meaningthattheActwasgivenRoyalAssentinthe14th, yearofthereignof George the Third, and was the 90th Act given Royal Assent in that parliament, hence c 90).

UK Bills

A billisproposedlegislationbeforeParliament.Billsarecitedbytheirname,the ParliamentarySession,theHouseofParliamentinwhichitoriginatedandthe running order assigned to it, and any relevant sections or subsections. HC= House of Commons; HL= House of Lords.

Citation: (Identity Cards Bill 2004-5)

Reference: Identity Cards Bill 2004-5 HC-8, s 9(4).

UK Statutory Instruments

These are orders and regulations linked to particular Acts.

These should be referenced by name, date and serial number (where available). Subsidiarywordsinlongtitleswithinthein-textcitationmaybeabbreviated(see example below), but the full title must be given in the reference.

Citation: (Telecommunications (LBP) (IC) Regulations 2000)

Reference: The Telecommunications (Lawful Business Practice) (Interception of Communications) Regulations 2000.

EC Legislation

EuropeanCommunity(EC)legislation(Regulations,DirectivesandDecisions),and other instruments (including Recommendations and Opinions) should be referenced by providing the legislation type, number and title, then publication details from the Official Journal (OJ) of the European Communities. Note: These references can be lengthy.

Citation: (Commission Regulation 1475/95)

Reference:CommissionRegulation(EC)No1475/95of28June1995onthe application of Article 85 (3) [now 81 (3)] of the Treaty to certain categories of motor vehicle distribution and servicing agreementsOfficial Journal L 145,29/06/1995 pp. 0025 - 0034.

The capital letter 'L' above (Official Journal L) indicates the series stands for Legislation; the C series contains EU information and notices, and the S series contains invitations to tender (Oxford Standard p.18).

Extracted with Kind Permission of University Centre Grimsby and Yorkshire Coast's College Scarborough from their guidance "Definitive guide to Harvard referencing and Bibliographies”

Last modified: Monday, 11 July 2016, 3:25 PM