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North Carolina Courts Adopt Universal Citation for Judicial Opinions

Legal nerds across the state will be excited to learn that the Supreme Court of North Carolina recently adopted a universal citation format for all judicial opinions and publications. Used whenever there is a parallel citation, this universal format will make direct references to paragraphs within the opinions rather than relying on references to page numbers of printed versions, making citations simpler and more online-friendly.


The universal citation is used by a number of other states as well as several international jurisdictions and represents a step toward modernizing and unifying the North Carolina court system. This change in formatting allows opinions to be published online immediately, without the need to wait for publication of printed reporters, and also makes it much easier to search the content electronically. The new universal format will apply to all opinions filed on or after January 1, 2021.

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