Case: EU Human Rights [from Print source using APA 5th ed.]


Because the situation regarding legal references is complex, and only US law is covered in the APA Manual, the following guidance is based on the system recommended by the Institute of Criminal Justice Studies. It should not be followed by any student submitting work to the Law Department of Portsmouth Business School, and students working in other departments should consult their lecturers.

Cases from the European Court of Human Rights are cited either in the official reports (ECHR) or the European Human Rights Reports (EHRR). The official reports were originally known as Series A, and numbered consecutively. From 1998 they were renamed Reports of Judgments and Decisions and cited as ECHR). The EHRR series is also consecutively numbered, but from 2001 case numbers replaced page numbers. In any piece of work use one or other report series consistently throughout.

Unreported cases must identify the court and date of judgement in place of publication (current information can be found on the European Court of Human Rights website or in the HUDOC database).

European Commission of Human Rights cases are cited as Decisions and Reports of the Commission series (DR) or in early years to the Yearbook of the European Commission of Human Rights (Yearbook EComHR).

Standard Form

Cases are not included in reference lists at all. However, on the first mention of a case a full citation is given stating:

European Court of Human Rights

Parties to the case (Application number) (Year for Series A or EHRR) Volume for EHRR Series Law report series ( Year volume for ECHR) first page.

European Commission of Human Rights -1998

Parties to the case (Application) (Year) Volume Law report series first page (EComHR in case of Yearbook entries).

Thereafter the names of the parties italicised an accepted / recognised abbreviation of it can be used without the other details.


Decisions and Reports of the European Commission of Human Rights

Zamir v UK (App 9174/80) (1985) 40 DR 42.

X v Austria (App 8811/79) (1964) 7 Yearbook 166 (EComHR).

European Court of Human Rights

Boyle and Rice v UK (App no 9659/82, 9658/82) (1988) Series A no 131.

Arthur Collins Redfearn v UK (App no 47335/06) ECHR 2009, 112.

Unreported case

Case of A and Others v UK (App no 3455/05) Strasbourg 19 February 2009.

Citation in Text

Later references to the above cases would simply use the case names:

as stated in Boyle and Rice v UK...

...X v Austriarefers to the earlier case of ...


  • Case names are always in italics. If you wish to pinpoint the exact location of a particular quotation or reference add "at p17" or "at para 3" depending upon the conventions of the particular publication you are using.