Library Subject Guides

Law: Referencing

New Zealand Law Style Guide

The New Zealand Law Style Guide (3rd ed) is the “house style” of the University of Canterbury School of Law.


If you cannot find what you need, please contact the Law Subject Librarians – Theresa Buller and John Arnold.

You can:

Cross References in MS Word

As you are writing your paper, rather than having to update numbering manually in subsequent footnote citations such as
35 Spiller, above n 31, at 93
the cross reference function of MS Word can be used to update the numbering throughout the document.

In Word:

  • Insert the footnote as normal: Ctrl+Alt+f is the keyboard shortcut
    • Instead of typing the number x for "above n x", type "above n "
    • Click the References tab and then click Cross-reference (a little over halfway along the ribbon)
    • Choose Footnote on the "Reference Type" dropdown
    • Click on the footnote referred to from the bottom of the dialogue box, and then click Insert
  • To update the cross-reference numbers as new footnotes are added 
    • Click into the footnote area of any page
    • Select all footnotes: Ctrl+a is the keyboard shortcut
    • F9

If you need to do endnotes (rather than footnotes):

  • Keyboard shortcut is Ctrl+Alt+d
  • Cross-referencing for endnotes is the same as for footnotes, except choose Endnote on the "Reference Type" dropdown step


Answers and suggestions for

  • materials frequently referenced but not specifically given in the Style Sheet or NZLSG book – a link to the the relevant section of NZLSG is given; and
  • situations in which NZLSG provides no direct guidance. These are signalled by “cf NZLSG”, and being our suggestions only it may be desirable to check with your lecturer or supervisor.

Book chapter with individual author, but book has personal authors not editors – see NZLSG 6.2.4, eg

Richard Boast “Maori Land and the Treaty of Waitangi” in Richard Boast and others Maori Land Law (2nd ed, LexisNexis, Wellington, 2004) 1.


Briefing paper to a Government Minister – see NZLSG 5.4(c)

Ministry of Justice Review of the ‘Claim of Right’ Defence – Initial Briefing (9 June 2010).


Cases and documents associated with cases


Re Ellis v R SC 49/2019, 30 January 2020 (Statement of Tikanga).


Child Law online commentary (NZLSG 6.3)

Clare Barrett (ed) Child Law (online ed, Thomson Reuters).

Company Law online commentary (NZLSG 6.3)

Kath Clark (ed) Company Law (online ed, Thomson Reuters).

Company Law A-Z online commentary (NZLSG 6.3)

Susan Watson and others Company Law – A to Z of New Zealand Law (online ed, Thomson Reuters).

Constitutional Law A-Z online commentary (NZLSG 6.3)

Philip A Joseph Constitutional Law – A to Z of New Zealand Law (online ed, Thomson Reuters).

Encyclopedias available electronically:

Laws of New Zealand, see NZLSG  6.6.2

For other legal encyclopedias, cite in the same way as for print encyclopedias, but add “online ed” after the year of publication – see NZLSG 6.5.2, eg
Halsbury’s Laws of Australia Insurance: General Principles (online ed) at [235]–[270].

The Max Planck Encyclopedia of International Law and the Max Planck Encyclopedia of Comparative Constitutional Law, however, are structured more like an edited book (cf NZLSG 6.2), so applying that rule along with NZLSG 6.5.2 about online editions of encyclopedias, our suggested format would be, eg
Stephan Hobe “Non-Governmental Organizations” in Anne Peters (ed) Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law (online ed).
Andreas Kulick “Representative Democracy” in Rainer Grote, Frauke Lachenmann and Rüdiger Wolfrum (eds) Max Planck Encyclopedia of Comparative Constitutional Law (online ed).

For non-legal encyclopedias only available electronically, if – as is typical – they are structured like an edited book (cf NZLSG 6.2), apply that rule 6.2 and also NZLSG 6.1.9(b) to include “eBook ed”, eg
W. David McIntyre “Story: Self-government and independence” in Te Ara: The Encyclopedia of New Zealand (eBook ed, Manatū Taonga–Ministry for Culture and Heritage, 2012).


Environmental and Resource Management Law Online (Lexis Advance) (NZLSG 6.3)

Derek Nolan (ed) Environmental and Resource Management Law Online (online ed, LexisNexis).


Family Law Service online commentary (NZLSG 6.3)

Bill Atkin and others Family Law Service (online ed, LexisNexis).


Family Property online version (NZLSG 6.3)

Nicola Peart (ed) Family Property (online ed, Thomson Reuters).


Gault on Commercial Law online version (NZLSG 6.3)

Roger Thornton (ed) Gault on Commercial Law (online ed, Thomson Reuters).


Heath and Whale online commentary (NZLSG 6.3)

Heath and Whale online commentary (online ed, LexisNexis).


Immigration New Zealand’s operational manual (NZLSG 7.1; use the most recent ‘manual updated on’ date from the website)

Immigration New Zealand “Operational Manual” (20 August 2020) <>.


Journal articles in journals published in New Zealand: search Legal Citations of Aotearoa New Zealand for type of brackets round the year and the journal’s abbreviation; see NZLSG 6.4 for the general form.


Land Law online version (Westlaw NZ) (NZLSG 6.3)

John Burrows (ed) Land Law (online ed, Thomson Reuters).


Mazengarb’s Employment Law online commentary (NZLSG 6.3)

Mo Al Obaidi and others (eds) Mazengarb’s Employment Law (NZ) (online ed, LexisNexis).


Morison’s Company Law online commentary (NZLSG 6.3)

Nicola Buchegger and others Morison’s Company Law (NZ) (online ed, LexisNexis).


NZ Company Law and Practice Commentary (CCH) (NZLSG 6.3)

NZ Company Law and Practice Commentary (online ed, CCH).


New Zealand Parliamentary Debates (Hansard): the entry in the Bibliography is just: NZPD. For footnotes, see NZLSG 5.1.1.


Resource Management online commentary (Westlaw NZ) (NZLSG 6.3)

Stephen Blakeley (ed) Resource Management (online ed, Thomson Reuters).

  • Also called Brookers Resource Management in pages ‘What’s New’ and ‘Product Scope Information’ (i button on the Product Title drop-down list)



  • Repealed statutes are not tagged with “Repealed” (NZLSG 4.1).


Transcript of Oral Arguments in the Supreme Court, see NZLSG 3.8.


Treaties (NZLSG 10.1)

Convention on the Rights of the Child 1577 UNTS 3 (opened for signature 20 November 1989, entered into force on 2 September 1990).

General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 55 UNTS 194 (opened for signature 30 October 1947, entered into force 1 January 1948).

Paris Agreement on Climate Change [2016] ATS 24 (opened for signature 22 April 2016, entered into force 4 November 2016).

Treaty of Lisbon amending the Treaty on European Union and the Treaty establishing the European Community (13 December 2007, entered into force 1 December 2009).

TRIPS Agreement – see NZLSG 10.6.1

Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties 1155 UNTS 331 (opened for signature 23 May 1969, entered into force 27 January 1980).

  • Notes:
    • The General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade is commonly referred to as GATT.
    • The Paris Agreement on Climate Change is not in the UNTS or NZTS, so the ATS citation is used in accordance with rule 10.1.1(c).


Treaty of Waitangi, see NZLSG 4.1.1(e)