Answered By: Jennifer Burr
Last Updated: Aug 03, 2016     Views: 279

The APA manual has an appendix for citing legal materials.

On page 219 of the manual, it states "In text, give the popular or official name of the act (if any) and the year of the act.  In the reference list entry, include the source and section number of the statute, and in parentheses, give the publication date of the stuatory compilation, which may be different from the year in the name of the act."

The manual uses the Americans with Disabilities Act as a model (on page 220).  Here is another example:

text citation - (Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996)

reference list entry -

Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996, Pub. L. No. 104-193, sec. 103 (1996).

IMPORTANT NOTE:  sec. 103 means section 103 - and is used if you are analyzing that section only.  sec. is usually replaced by a double s squiggle symbol.  You will often also see Statutes at large or USC or USCA after the public law number.  Those are compilations of statutes.  If you were using Statutes at Large, the citation would probably be right on the printout.

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