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Summer Clerks Research Guide

Strategies and research tips for working law students

California Citation Style

Practice Tip: Use California style for California courts.

Complete Handbook of Legal Style for California Courts and Lawyers style manual available online at: 

Syntax of Note - Case Citations

  • Year of the opinion goes right after the name, enclosed in parens.
  • Parentheses enclose the entire citation unless it's part of the sentence.
  • No spaces in reporter abbreviations.
  • Brackets enclose parallel citations to unofficial and regional reporters.
  • Abbreviations for party names are minimal. See Rule 6.2.
  • Short-form case citations are slightly different from other citation styles.


  • Contractual waivers of liability that relate to the public interest are void as a matter of public policy. (Tunkl v. Regents of University of California (1963) 60 Cal.2d 92 [32 Cal.Rptr. 33, 383 P.2d 441].)
  • Statement supported by text on page 181. (Jackson v. County of Los Angeles (1997) 60 Cal.App.4th 171, 181.) Another statement supported by text on the same page. (Ibid.)

California Style Citation References