Instructions for Preparation of Papers


The Legal Issues Journal (LIJ) publishes original papers, case comments, short reports, debates and book reviews dealing with matters of law and society, including law and science (e.g. law and genetics), justice, philosophy, politics and development (e.g. business). Preference is given to material that is interdisciplinary and with international application.

Submission of papers

Manuscripts should be submitted online, and the following files should be uploaded:

  • Title Page
  • Main Document
  • Figure files (if any) – attached separately.

To submit your manuscript please use the manuscript submission system on this website. All submissions must be in .doc or docx format.

Accessibility to diverse audience

Authors are strongly encouraged to use language that is accessible to a wide readership. Papers should be succinct and omit unnecessary words. Papers that are difficult to follow will not be not be accepted for peer review. Authors who have not received professional training in Academic Writing and Publishing are encouraged to do so.


Non-native English speakers should have their manuscripts checked by a native English speaker before submission. Alternative language editing services are also available here. Either American English or British English spelling can be used, but not interchangeably.

Types of LIJ articles

All submissions must include an abstract that can be read as stand-alone text.

Full papers

There is no word limit for full papers. There are no strict formatting requirements, but the recommended structure is Abstract, Introduction, Main text (e.g. Methods, Results, Discussion), Conclusion and Reference sections, but deviations from this format are acceptable. Section headings and subheadings should not be numbered. Rank of headings/subheadings should be clear.

Case comments / Short reports

Short Reports should be of an overall maximum length of 2500 words, including Summary and References; and 2000 words if tables and/or figures are included (proportionate to length). Verbosity is strongly discouraged. The formatting requirements are the same as those for full papers.

Debate articles

LIJ publishes responses to papers appearing in previous issues, and authors of the original paper will be given the opportunity for simultaneous response.

Book reviews

Must be concise. Formatting requirements are the same as for full papers.

Style guidelines

Title page: The title page should be a separate document, and should include: title of the article; authors’ names and institutions (with addresses); contact details (email, phone, address) of the corresponding author; and a short running heading (maximum 50 characters and spaces). The abstract should NOT be included in this document.

Abstract/Summary: Up to 200 words. It should summarise the aims and objectives, methodology, sample (if any), results and conclusions of the study. The Abstract should be included in the Main Document.

Main Document: A single Word document file, comprising the text (including title and abstract) and tables. The tables should be placed after the text. Name(s) and affiliation(s) of the author(s) should NOT be included.


LIJ has no requirements as to form of referencing used except that referencing must be consistent throughout the paper. The preferred method of referencing is described below. Quotes must include page numbers.

In the text references

Up to two authors: given in brackets and by author’s last name and year of publication, divided by comma, e.g. ‘(Jones & Kalam, 2017). Two of more authors: in brackets, with first author followed by et al, full stop and year. No comma should be used. E.g. (King et al. 2017).

End of text references

Except cases and statutory instruments, which should be provided under a separate hearing e.g. ‘Statutory instruments’, references should be provided alphabetically. If two or more publications are from the same author, then they should be listed as to the year of publication, the latest coming first.


One author: Kokoya, F. (2013). The future of equality. Legal Issues Journal, 2(1). No comma after the last author, and the journal name in italics.

Two or more authors: Kokoya, F., Jones, S. & Bilioti, K. (2010). Justice and politics. Legal Issues Journal, 4(2). No comma before the last author (only a full stop).


Similar to journal citation, except that the book title will be in italics and not the publisher. E.g. Hasani, K. (1998). Law and Genetics. Oxford University Press. Oxford.

Online sources:

Must provide an accessible link and must state the date it was retrieved/accessed. E.g. The World Bank. Gini coefficient 2014. www.wb/gini (accessed 4th June 2014)

Online reports should state copyright holder and year of publication.  E.g. Ministry of Justice. (2016). Access to justice report 2014 www.js/aj (accessed 4th June 2014)


Acknowledgments may be included at the end of the main text.

Disclosure statements

Ethical statement/approval, Conflicts of interest and Funding statements should be added before the Reference section of the submitted paper.

Ethical Approval

To be publishable, research must comply with accepted ethical standards. A confirmation that: a) informed consent of participants (or their legal guardians) was obtained; and b) that the relevant institutional approval was obtained, is essential.

In relation to secondary, a confirmation that authors assert adherence to ethical requirements, would suffice.

Conflicts of interest

Disclose at the time of submission any competing interests that they may have, providing for each co-author, details of all known financial, professional and personal relationships with the potential to bias the work.

Where no known conflicts of interest are known to exist, please include the statement:

The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.


Identify the sources of funding, providing name of funder and reference.

Submission checklist

  • Formatting and ethical requirements are complied with.
  • Author(s): names, affiliations and order of contribution, have been provided, and one author has been designated as corresponding author.
  • The structure of the paper is clear, and the abstract can be read as stand-alone text.
  • Manuscript has been checked for spelling and grammar.
  • All References mentioned in the References list are cited in the text, and vice versa.
  • Permission has been obtained for use of copyrighted material from other sources including the Web.
  • All necessary declarations have been made.