Get 20% off for your first order as a new customer!
Chat
Available 24/7
Essay in 3 Steps!
Email
talex.wr1ter@gmail.com
support@wr1ter.com

In academic writing, students have to cite sources to back up their claims or strengthen their arguments. Hence, this guide is designed for students to learn how to cite a federal document in APA and MLA referencing styles by observing the main principles and examples of citation entries, in-text citations, and footnotes.

Types of Legislative Sources

Official sources include:

  • books;
  • peer-reviewed journal articles;
  • government reports; and
  • legislations (laws and bills).
How to cite a bill

Citing a Bill in APA

The structure of an APA bill citation is:

Title of the bill. (Year). Resolution number, Session number. Retrieved from ‘Website Title’ website: link.

An example of an APA bill citation is:

The SEE MORE Act (2019). 116th Congress. Retrieved from Congress.gov website: https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/6800/text

An example of an in-text citation is:

The idea behind the SEE MORE Act (2019) is to exempt health care providers that utilize telehealth capabilities, specifically remote imaging, to treat chronic eye disease from specified Medicare requirements, such as geographic restrictions.

An example of an APA footnote citation is:

Screenings for Eye Evaluation, Monitoring, Observation, Review, and Examination Act or the SEE MORE Act (2019). 116th Congress.

Notably, the APA citation, unlike the MLA citation, does not require the mentioning of the organizational unit (Senate or House) responsible for the bill. As such, there is no difference in citation between a Senate and a House bill.

Citing a Bill in MLA

When citing a bill in the MLA format, a student must follow a specific structure:

Format of a MLA bill citation is:

Name of government, Name of the organizational unit (House or Senate), Name of the document, Publisher or Website Title, Year of original publication. Congress number (optional), Session number (optional), Number of the publication, link. Accessed Date.

An example of a MLA bill citation is:

United States, Congress, Senate, Screenings for Eye Evaluation, Monitoring, Observation, Review, and Examination Act or the SEE MORE Act. Congress.gov, 2019. S.2020, 116th Congress, https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/senate-bill/2020/all-info. Accessed 24 June 2020.

An example of an in-text citation is:

The SEE MORE Act (2019) intends to exempt telemedicine services that use remote imaging to treat chronic eye disease from specified Medicare requirements, such as geographic restrictions.

An example of a MLA footnote citation is:

United States, Congress, Senate, Screenings for Eye Evaluation, Monitoring, Observation, Review, and Examination Act or the SEE MORE Act. Congress.gov, 2019. S.2020, 116th Congress, https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/senate-bill/2020/all-info. Accessed 24 June 2020.

Organizational Unit

Notably, it is only the MLA format that requires a student to indicate the organizational unit – Senate or House – responsible for the bill. As such, a citation for a bill originating from the House would replace “Senate” with “House” as follows:

Structure of a MLA bill citation with an organizational unit is:

United States, Congress, House, The Heroes Act. Congress.gov, 2020. H.R.6800, 116th Congress, https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/senate-bill/2020/all-info. Accessed 24 June 2020.

The in-text citation would be:

The US House of Representatives has proposed, through The Heroes Act, to provide Americans with a safety net to caution against the devastating effects of COVID-19 pandemic.

A footnote citation would be:

United States, Congress, House, The Heroes Act. Congress.gov, 2020. H.R.6800, 116th Congress, https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/senate-bill/2020/all-info. Accessed 24 June 2020.