Case Citations


McGill 8th, appendix C specifies the following hierarchy (preference) of sources (case citations):

  1. neutral (e.g., SCC, ONCA)
  2. official (e.g., SCR, FCR)
  3. semi-official (e.g., OR, NSR) Important: note currency dates
  4. other — unofficial/topical and database (e.g., CanLII, CCC, DLR)

With #4, the audience for the citation is a factor in the choice. Editorial effort (not mentioned by McGill) is also a factor.


Provide no more than two sources (not counting a CanLII link).

Note: This is contrary to the McGill Guide.

For Supreme Court of Canada cases from 2000 on, provide a neutral citation and an SCR citation. For Supreme Court cases before 2000, provide an SCR citation; allow an additional citation if it is provided by the author (e.g., DLR, CCC).

Omit QL and Carswell citations unless they are the only citations available.

Prefer CanLII citations to other unofficial/topical/database citations. Otherwise, replace with a more preferred citation (#1–#3).

Link all citations to CanLII if links are available.

Neutral Citations 

Choc v Hudbay Minerals Inc, 2013 ONSC 1414

Weaver v Weaver, 2014 BCSC 209

Official Reporters 

Canada (Human Rights Commission) v Toronto-Dominion Bank, [1998] 4 FCR 205 (CA)

Trudel v Clairol Inc of Canada, [1975] 2 SCR 236

Semi-Official Reporters 

Campbell v Canada Life Assurance Co (1990), 65 Man R (2d) 95 (CA)

Cook v Ip (1985), 52 OR (2d) 289 (CA)

Unofficial Reporters 

AG Can v Szaniszlo (1985), 25 DLR (4th) 606 (BCSC)

Ashdown v Jumbo Video Inc, [1993] OJ No 1169 (QL) (Gen Div)

Ballard v Canadian Fishing Co, [1982] BCJ No 90 (QL) at para 72 (SC) note placement of pinpoint

Campos v Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada, 2009 CanLII 43186 (Ont Sup Ct J)

Undisclosed Parties 

R v I (LR) and T (E) , [1993] 4 SCR 504

R v R (D), [1994] 1 SCR 881

Unreported Cases 

Higginson v Babine Forest Products (29 June 2012), Prince George (BCSC) no docket number available

Hospital Employees' Union, Local 180 v Chapman (2 July 1987), Vancouver A870515 (BCSC)

Parks & MacIntyre v Christian Horizons No 2 (September 1992), 16 CHRR D/171 (Ont Bd Inquiry)

Other & Examples 

Alberta v University of Calgary, 2015 ABCA 118, leave to appeal to SCC granted, 2015 CanLII 69443

Greenberg v Meffert, 1985 CanLII 1975 (Ont CA), leave to appeal to SCC refused, 19563 (10 December 1985) use docket number and date if no citation available

Hope v Brown (1990), 52 BCLR (2d) 234 (SC Chambers)

R v Hundal (1991), 63 CCC (3d) 214 (BCCA), aff'd [1993] 1 SCR 867

R v Hundal, [1993] 1 SCR 867, aff'g (1991), 63 CCC (3d) 214 (BCCA)

International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Chauffeurs, Warehousemen and Helpers of America, Local 464 v Taylor-Read Enterprises Inc, 1980 CanLII 535 (BCSC), Mckenzie J [IBT v Taylor-Read Enterprises]

R v James, 2014 SCC 5, [2014] 1 SCR 80

Kornerup v Raytheon Canada Ltd, 2007 BCSC 584, rev'd (sub nom Ciric v Raytheon Canada Limited) 2008 BCCA 241

Kos Oilfield Transportation Ltd v Mitchell, 2010 ABCA 210 (application for stay)

Kos Oilfield Transportation Ltd v Mitchell, 2010 ABCA 270 (substantive appeal)

Trudel v Clairol Inc of Canada, [1975] 2 SCR 236 at 243, 16 CPR (2d) 203

R v Williams (1995), 23 OR (3d) 122 (CA), leave to appeal to SCC refused, (1995), 42 CR (4th) 409 (SCC)

US Cases 

Castle Rock Entertainment, Inc v Carol Publishing Group Inc, 150 F (3d) 132 (2nd Cir 1998)

Chase Manhattan Bank, NA v J & L Gen Contractors, Inc, 823 SW (2d) 204 (Tex Ct App 1992)

Durflinger v Artiles, 563 F Supp 322 (D Kan 1981), aff'd 727 F (2d) 888 (10th Cir 1984)

Gosman v United States, 573 F (2d) 31 (Fed Cir 1978)

Hans Rees' Sons, Inc v North Carolina, 283 US 123 (1931)

Hartshorn v Heydinger, 647 F Supp 73 (SD W Va 1986)

Maryland v Craig, 110 S Ct 3160 (1990)

Nash Miami Motors, Inc v Commissioner, 23 TCM 1388 (1964)