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1.2 Format

1.2.1 Numbered and bulleted lists

Where the items in a list are a series of incomplete sentences, separate each item by a semicolon. Do not begin each item with a capital letter unless a capital is required as a matter of grammar, for example the item begins with a proper noun.

Where the items in a list are a series of complete sentences, each sentence should end with a full stop and begin with a capital letter.

Conclude all lists with a full stop.

Lists within articles may be labelled either by (a) (b) (c) … or (1) (2) (3) …, depending on what is most appropriate in the context and what causes least confusion with nearby headings. Bullet points may also be used.

Eg There are four major standards of patentability. The invention must be:

(1) novel;

(2) non-obvious to a person having ordinary skill in the art to which the subject matter pertains;

(3) capable of producing a useful, concrete and tangible result; and

(4) of patentable subject matter.

Eg Proponents of the need for a right to a healthy environment cited the following data:

(a) More than 13 million deaths (23 per cent of all deaths) could be prevented each year by making our environment healthier.

(b) For children under 14, 36 per cent of all disease is caused by environmental factors such as unsafe water or air pollution. There are more than four million environmentally caused deaths of children each year.

(c) The economic benefit of halving the number of people without access to safe drinking water would outweigh the investment costs by a ratio of eight to one.

1.2.2 Quotations

Quotations should generally reproduce the original exactly, except when minor alterations are necessary in accordance with the rules that follow.

(a) Style

The format of the quotation depends on its length.

(i) Short quotations (those with fewer than 30 words)

Short quotations are not indented and remain part of the text, within double quotation marks.

Give the closing double quotation mark after any quoted punctuation. Only include a full stop, question mark or exclamation mark at the end of a quotation, inside the quotation mark, if the entire sentence is being quoted. Place non-quoted full stops and commas outside the quotation marks.

Give the footnote reference at the end of the sentence after punctuation, including the quotation mark. Give the footnote reference directly after the quotation only if the sentence contains more than one footnote.

Eg Nicholls J said: “It is trite law that trustees cannot fetter the exercise by them at a future date of a discretion possessed by them as trustees.” 1

Eg It has been argued that the “purpose of these exclusions is to prevent the patenting of inventions likely to induce public disorder or riot”.2

Eg If the involvement is no more than to “wave one’s hand over the file”, there is no privilege.3

Eg The circumstances in which the courts will review such a recommendation are “extremely limited”4 because the decision-maker is an expert body which is “effectively a commission of the market”.5

(ii) Long quotations (those with 30 or more words)

Inset quotations from both the left and right margins in a smaller font and not enclosed within double quotation marks.

Insert a colon at the end of the text immediately preceding the quotation.

Place the footnote number immediately after the colon, preceding the quotation.

Include a blank line between the preceding text and the quotation and between the end of the quotation and any following text.

Begin the quotation with a capital letter where the quoted passage begins with a new sentence. Where part of the sentence is omitted from the quoted passage, indicate this by an ellipsis. See 1.2.2(b)(v) for information regarding the use of ellipses.

Eg The Court of Appeal held:1

The copyrights of other literary works can be infringed even when there is no substantial similarity between the works, it would thus appear that the copyrights of computer programs can be infringed even absent copying of the literal elements of the program.

Eg The test for the implication of terms is that set out by the majority in BP Refinery (Westernport) Pty Ltd v Shire of Hastings:2

… for a term to be implied, the following conditions (which may overlap) must be satisfied: (1) it must be reasonable and equitable; (2) it must be necessary to give business efficacy to the contract so that no term will be implied if the contract is effective without it; (3) it must be so obvious that “it goes without saying”; (4) it must be capable of clear expression; (5) it must not contradict any express term of the contract.

When quoting from a judgment that includes paragraph numbers and the quotation is from the start of a paragraph, include the paragraph number as part of the long quotation. It is unnecessary to then include the paragraph number in the footnote.

Eg In Dever v Knobloch, Dobson J observed:3

[41] Part of the rationale for the rule against any form of dealings by trustees with trust property is because of the prospect that their familiarity with the property gives trustees an advantage not shared by outsiders to the trust. Such advantages may be difficult to identify or measure. Equity is absolute on the point because of the consistent high standards expected of those entrusted with the custody and management of property that belongs beneficially to others.

Eg In Attorney-General v Carter the Court of Appeal considered the applicability of the tort of negligent misstatement to a public body:4

[24] If the defendant has, or is deemed to have, assumed responsibility to the plaintiff to be careful in what is said or written, thereby creating proximity, it will usually, subject to policy considerations, be fair, just and reasonable to hold the defendant liable for want of care.

[27] Hence, before the law of torts will impose on the author of a statement a duty to take care the plaintiff must show that it is appropriate, on the foregoing basis, to hold that the author has or must be taken to have assumed responsibility to the plaintiff to take reasonable care in making the statement.

(b) General rules

(i) Quotations within quotations

Short quotations within short quotations are enclosed within single quotation marks.

Eg The defendant had told the plaintiff that “there was no need … to be concerned because he had ‘five years on the contract and it [was] very difficult … to have that clause altered’”.2

If the quotation is a short quotation within a long quotation, enclose it within double quotation marks.

Eg In Taiaroa v Minister of Justice,McGechan J explained the approach to be taken to judicial review for error of fact:4

Two points … require emphasis. First, the fact “must be an established one or an established and recognised opinion”; and “it cannot be said to be a mistake to adopt one of two different points of view of the facts, each of which may reasonably be held”: Cooke P [in] New Zealand Fishing Industry Association Inc v Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries [1988] 1 NZLR 544 (CA) at 552.

For long quotations within long quotations, the long quotation should be indented further from both the left and right margins. Do not enclose the quotation within quotation marks.

Eg In Select 2000 Ltd v ENZA Ltd, the Court of Appeal held:5

[40] Whether an enactment gives rise to a cause of action for breach of statutory duty, is a question of construction. As Lord Simonds put it in Cutler v Wandsworth Stadium Ltd [1949] AC 398 (HL) at 407:

The only rule which in all the circumstances is valid is that the answer must depend on a consideration of the whole Act and the circumstances, including the pre-existing law, in which it was enacted.

(ii) Footnotes and citations within quotations

If there are footnotes or citations in the material being quoted, omit these where possible.

Where inline citations (citations in the body of the text) are omitted, note this after the quotation by inserting “citations omitted” in round brackets following the quotation if inline citations are being used. If footnotes are being used, note the omission of citations in the footnote giving the reference for the quotation.

When the quoted text includes footnotes which are omitted, note this after the quotation by inserting “footnotes omitted” in round brackets following the quotation if inline citations are being used or following the citation in the footnote if footnotes are being used.

When footnotes or citations within quotations are being retained, the following rules apply depending on whether footnotes or inline citations are being used.

If footnotes are being used

When the quoted text includes footnotes which are retained and you are using footnotes for citation information, include the content of the original footnotes in a footnote. Such footnotes form part of the sequentially numbered footnotes being used in the rest of your work and appear at the end of the page as per usual. Make the footnotes as compliant as possible with this guide, even if that requires altering the format of that footnote.

Eg Section 55 of Queensland’s Property Law Act 1955 requires the third party’s acceptance of changes to an insurance contract. However, where there has been no acceptance the insurer’s duties have been described as follows:2

… the insurer is under no duty to inform the third party of cancellation of the policy. It has been held that to impose a duty on the insurer to give notice to a third party would have the effect of rewriting the policy, which the courts are reluctant to do.3 However, it is arguable that a third party beneficiary has a right to expect notification from the insurer of cancellation of the policy in accordance with the duty of utmost good faith.4

2 Samantha Hardy “Third Party Beneficiaries to Insurance Contracts” (1997) ILJ 15 at 21–22.

3 Cooper Henderson Finance Ltd v Colonial Mutual General Insurance Co Ltd [1990] 1 NZLR 1 (CA).

4 This issue was not raised in Cooper Henderson, above, which was decided solely on the basis of a duty of care in negligence.

If inline citations are being used

When the quoted text includes footnotes which you wish to retain, and you are using inline citations, include the material in the original footnotes inline inside square brackets. Make the inline citations as compliant as possible with this guide, even if that means altering the format of the original citation.

Eg The policy of equitable remedies in relation to breach of confidence claims is considered in John Glover Equity, Restitution & Fraud (LexisNexis, Chatswood (NSW), 2004) at [7.13]:

Insolvency rearranges the usual structure of relations between the parties to an unjust enrichment claim. Moral or legal justifications may not exist for giving restitutionary claimants priority over third parties. Defendants may not have not been enriched, in a real sense, at the claimant’s expense. Claimants and defendants may not have had prior dealings [Westdeutsche Landesbank Girozentrale v Islington London Borough Council [1996] AC 669 (HL) at 704 per Lord Browne-Wilkinson].

(iii) Alterations

Enclose any alteration of the original, except the insertion of an ellipsis, in square brackets.

Generally, quotations should not be altered. The following are exceptions:

Mistakes and errors

If there is a minor syntactical or typographical error in the original, simply correct it in the quotation by inserting the correct word or words in square brackets and removing the erroneous word or words.

Do not use the Latin “sic” except where it is important to record that this particular expression or mistake was used by the original author.

If “sic” is used it should be contained in square brackets and placed after the mistake or error.

Eg Original: The judge have decided that … .

Quotation: “The judge [has] decided that … .”

Eg Original: The judge have decided that … .

Quotation: “The judge have [sic] decided that … .”

Quotations forming part of a sentence in the text

If the quotation completes or is part of a sentence in the text, the complete sentence must be grammatically correct.

It may be necessary to alter the quotation to achieve this.

Eg Original: The ground on which the grant of an option to purchase some time in the future is treated as improper on the part of trustees is because it precludes them from exercising their judgement according to the circumstances as they exist at the time of sale.

Quotation: The option to purchase was regarded as improper because “it preclude[d] [the trustees] from exercising their judgement according to the circumstances as they exist[ed] at the time of sale”.

(iv) Emphasis

Indicate the addition of emphasis by writing “(emphasis added)” in the relevant footnote after the citation or following the quote in the text if using inline citations.

Emphasis should be used sparingly.

For further information on the use of emphasis see rule 1.1.4.

Eg Emphasis added:

The Court held that “[t]he upbringing of children extends to making decisions for them as to health and medical treatment.”1

1 Re J (An Infant): B and B v Director-General of Social Welfare [1996] 2 NZLR 134 (CA) at 145 (emphasis added).

(v) Omissions

Where any part of the original text has been deliberately omitted in a quotation, indicate this by an ellipsis “…”. Do not enclose the ellipsis in brackets or quotation marks. Rather the ellipsis should be preceded and followed by a space.

Use the ellipsis symbol and not three full stops. The keyboard shortcut for ellipsis on Windows computers is “Ctrl + Alt + .” and on Apple computers “Option + ;”.

Where a paragraph has been omitted, place the ellipsis in the line break between the quoted paragraphs and aligned to the left margin.

Where a sentence has been omitted, place the ellipsis one space after the full stop and one space before the beginning of the next sentence.

Retain the punctuation in the original text.

Eg Original: I find, having regard to his experience and the evidence which I have heard of the circumstances, that the risk must have been clear to him and it is not a defence for him to claim that his attention was taken up by the banner.

Quotation: The judge held that “having regard to his experience and the evidence which I have heard of the circumstances, … the risk must have been clear to him”.

1.2.3 Numbers and dates

(a) Numbers

Use numerals as opposed to writing numbers out in words wherever possible, except that:

(a) Write out whole numbers under 10 (except footnote numbers, numbers in dates and numbers relating to legislative provisions) in words.

(b) Where a number begins a sentence, write it in words. Where possible, however, it may be better to rewrite the sentence to avoid beginning with a number.

(c) In pleadings, the relevant court rules should be followed (see in particular r 5.15 of the High Court Rules).

Express percentages in the format “75 per cent” or “nine per cent”, with “per cent” written as two words.

Eg The section refers to 0.25 of one per cent.

Write page and paragraph number ranges out in full: 360–365 (not 360–65); and [32]–[38].

Use commas to indicate thousands from the number 1,000 and upwards: hence “4,500” and “12,300”.

(b) Dates

Always write dates in the format 28 October 1965.

(c) Times

Times may be given using the 24-hour clock format or the 12-hour clock format. When using the 12-hour clock format, include a space between the time and “am” or “pm”. When giving a period of time “am” or “pm” should be included after both the start and end time.

Eg 9 pm or 21.00

Eg 8.15 am or 08.15

Eg 1 pm – 3 pm

(d) Decades

Give references to decades in full. Do not put an apostrophe between the year and the “s”.

Eg 1990s

NOT “the nineties”

NOT 90s

When spans of years are written give both years in full.

Eg 1985–1987

NOT 1985–87

(e) Centuries

Write centuries up to and including the ninth in full, in the format “eighth century”.

Write all other centuries in figures with the “th” in lowercase letters, not superscript, in the format “19th century”.

(f) Ordinal numbers

Write ordinal numbers out in full. Do not use numerals.

Eg The first time the Court considered … .

(g) Ranges of numbers

Ranges of numbers should be separated by an en dash, not a hyphen. An en dash is longer than a hyphen and shorter than an em dash. The keyboard shortcut for an en dash on Windows computers is “Ctrl + - ” (where “-” is the minus symbol) and on Apple computers “Option + - ” (where “-” is the hyphen symbol).

1.2.4 Currency

When referring to monetary amounts, give the three-letter currency code followed by the amount in figures.

Eg On receipt of the money in Hong Kong, the defendants withdrew USD 754,650 and converted it into HKD 5,884,400.

The International Organization for Standardization maintains a list of currency codes. The relevant standard is ISO 4217 Currency and fund name and code elements. At the time of publication, the list was available at <www.iso.org/iso/currency_codes_list-1.html> and at <www.currency-iso.org/iso_index/iso_tables.htm> and <www.xe.com/iso4217.php>. The latter two sites include a list of currency codes for historic currencies.

It is unnecessary to use the three-letter currency code if the currency is obvious from the context, for example in New Zealand writing where the only amounts referred to are in New Zealand dollars. In such cases, simply give the currency symbol, for example $, £ or ¥.

Eg The plaintiff purchased the property for $1,467,000.

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