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Sources of Law - Case Law: Hong Kong Case Law

Introduction

This page aims to offer a guidance on where you can locate sources of Hong Kong cases with various categories of resources, including:

Search in FIND@HKUL

Please be reminded that cases or judgments are not indexed in FIND@HKUL. To look for full text cases, you will have to search in relevant legal databases, or search by the full title of a law report in FIND@HKUL with "Books+" search scope.

 

Alternatively, you may change to Advance Search and enter the following search term for all available law reports within the HKUL Collection:

Database Training

At the beginning of first semester of each academic year, the Law Library will invite specialist trainers from LexisNexis and Thomson Reuters to conduct trainings for all law students to re-visit and familiarize the resources available from Lexis Advance Hong Kong and Westlaw Asia, and how to use them. Reserve a seat to master the skills in using these databases!

Help

If you find the images blur, you may zoom in the webpage for a better view.

 

Need help from us? Approach us via the following methods:

 Information Counter   (within opening hours only)

 3917-2914             (within opening hours only)

 lawlib@hku.hk

 Make appointment with our Law Librarian via Research Consultation Services (eligible for HKU academic staff and postgraduate students only)

HKU Libraries' Resources

Lexis Advance Hong Kong

As one of the key legal databases subscribed by HKU Libraries, a wide range of resources are available on case law, including but not limited to Hong Kong Cases, Hong Kong Family Law Reports, and CaseBase Hong Kong.

To look up for law reports, follow the steps below:

  • Access Path: Browse > Publications > Hong Kong > By Content Type > HK Cases 

             

 

PrimeLaw

Offered by Wolter Kluwer, PrimeLaw offers a collection of cases in different categories. This platform is also recognized with company law cases. Searching for cases can be done by entering party names or keywords in the search engine, after you selected HK Cases at the top bar menu. You may also filter the judgment date or area of law for full text of the cases at the left navigation menu.

 

Westlaw Asia

Fundamental resources on case law includes, but not limited to, The Authorized Hong Kong Law Reports & Digests, the Authorized Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal Reports and etc.

To browse different law reports, follow the steps below:

  • Access Path: Content Type > Cases > Hong Kong Case Law

            

           

 

The Authorized Hong Kong Law Reports & Digest [HKLRD]

HKLRD is the authorised law report endorsed by the Hong Kong Judiciary. It incorporates both the Hong Kong Law Digest [HKLD] and Hong Kong Law Reports [HKLR] into one law report in 1997. Cases are selected by the Hon. Mr. Justice Bokhary GBM, NPJ, General Editor, covering judgments back in 1972. It can be used to trace citations and brief details of cases, or to identify cases relevant to a particular subject area, such as company law, criminal law and procedure, election law, etc. 

The law report HKLRD published by Sweet & Maxwell, a child publisher of Thomson Reuter, is available in our collection in print and electronic access as details below:  

  • Print: 1997 – Current (PR KT4358.2 H7 L4)
  • Electronic: 1997 – Current (via Westlaw Asia)
    Access path: Cases > Hong Kong Case Law > Hong Kong Law Reports and Digest

 

The Authorized Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal Reports [HKCFAR]

Similar to HKLRD, HKCFAR is the authorised law reports of the judgments of the Court of Final Appeal, consisting of judgments of great significance. All headnotes are reviewed by the Court of Final Appeal. Chinese translations of headnotes, subject index, and index of cases and table are available. 

The law report HKCFAR published by Sweet & Maxwell since 1997, a subsidiary of Thomson Reuter, is available in our collection in print and electronic access as shown below:  

  • Print: 1997/98 – Current (PR KT4358.25 A93)
  • Electronic: 1997 – Current (via Westlaw Asia)
    Access path: Cases > Hong Kong Case Law > Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal Reports

Hong Kong Cases [HKC]

Published by Butterworths Asia, LexisNexis, HKC provides a comprehensive selection of the most significant decisions of, and appeals from, Hong Kong courts, from its founding as a colony through to its transition to Chinese sovereignty. Chinese catchwords and English summaries of Chinese judgments can also be found.

 

The Hong Kong Law Reports [HKLR]

H.K.L.R. contains reports of the Supreme Court cases starting from 1905 to 1996. The reporting is continued as Hong Kong Law Reports & Digest [HKLRD] in 1997.

Supplement volumes of the HKLR were published regarding cases of different courts. Below are some examples:

Hong Kong Criminal Law Reports [HKCLR]

Hong Kong District Court Law Reports [HKDCLR]

Hong Kong Lands Tribunal Law Reports [HKLTLR]

 

Hong Kong Chinese Law Reports & Translations [HKCLRT]

This series is fully bilingual with official English translations of judgments by the Judiciary, covering 1995 through 2008 in seven volumes. English translations are provided alongside the Chinese judgments, with fully bilingual catchwords and headnotes

Hong Kong Conveyancing and Property Reports [CPR]

Deals with all aspects of conveyancing and property in Hong Kong. Previously unreported cases, particularly from the Lands Tribunal, are also contained in the reports.

Hong Kong Family Law Reports [HKFLR]

This collection of judgments offers evidence of the intellectual arguments surrounding judicial discretion in the full spectrum of family law cases.

Hong Kong Public Law Reports [HKPLR]

This set contains cases relating to aspects of public law, notably those arising from the application of the Hong Kong Bill of Rights Ordinance. Since 1996, HKPLR appears together with the loose parts of Hong Kong Cases, in addition to a separate bound volume at the end of each year.

Hong Kong Law Digest [HKLD]
Monthly issues cumulate annually to form Hong Kong Law Yearbook (1985-1993) and Hong Kong Law Digest Yearbook (1994-1996).
This title is continued by Hong Kong Law Reports & Digest [HKLRD]

  • Print: 1989-1996 (HKS340 H77 C9*Located at Special Collection Serial Collection

Hong Kong Law Yearbook [HKLY]
Annual cumulation of Hong Kong law digest, continued by Hong Kong Law Digest Yearbook [HKLDY].

Hong Kong Law Digest Yearbook [HKLDY]
A source for tracing legal developments in Hong Kong.  Each monthly issue consists of a subject arrangement of digests of significant cases decided.  The Yearbook is the annual cumulation of the Digest and is similar in arrangement and contents. 

Hong Kong Law Digest [HKLD]
Monthly issues cumulate annually to form Hong Kong Law Yearbook (1985-1993) and Hong Kong Law Digest Yearbook (1994-1996).
This title is continued by Hong Kong Law Reports & Digest [HKLRD]

  • Print: 1989-1996 (HKS340 H77 C9*Located at Special Collection Serial Collection

 

Hong Kong Law Yearbook [HKLY]
Annual cumulation of Hong Kong law digest, continued by Hong Kong Law Digest Yearbook [HKLDY].

 

Hong Kong Law Digest Yearbook [HKLDY]
A source for tracing legal developments in Hong Kong.  Each monthly issue consists of a subject arrangement of digests of significant cases decided.  The Yearbook is the annual cumulation of the Digest and is similar in arrangement and contents. 

Cases heard in the courts may not be formally published in law reports. To locate these cases, you may use the following publications:

The Unreported Judgments Series

The Series are kept in binders and arranged by branches of law. Each series has its own indexes of judgments by action number, case name and judgment date.

  • Location: 2/F Law Library (Please refer to the A-Z index for identification) 

 

Hong Kong Unreported Judgments

 

Hong Kong Cases Unreported

 

Official Sources

Judiciary's Judgments (click to visit)

From the Judiciary’s website, you may find various kind of legal and judicial resources including court services and facilities, court diary, judgments and legal reference, and etc. Please be aware that not all judgments will be available on Judiciary’s Judgments website. To obtain a copy of judgment not available on the Judgments website, you may make your application to the relevant court registry (link) with justifications, and a fee may apply upon an approval of the application. 

 

Basic Law Court Case Database (click to visit)

The Basic Law Court Case Database contains court cases extracted from "Hong Kong Basic Law: Case Studies (1997-2010) (Articles 1-42)" and "Hong Kong Basic Law: Case Studies (1997-2010) (Articles 43-160)". Please note that the list of court case is available in Chinese only.

Open Access Resources

Hong Kong Legal Information Institute (HKLII) (click to visit)

A project jointly established by HKU Department of Computer Science and Faculty of Law, HKLII serves to provide free access to primary legal materials of Hong Kong for the general public with an aim to promote and support the rule of law in Hong Kong.

HKLII contains judgments from Court of Final Appeal (1997-), Court of Final Appeal (1946-), Court of First Instance (1946-), District Court (1946-), Family Court (1973-), Competition Tribunal (2017-), Lands Tribunal (1982-), UK Privy Council (1861-1997), and Miscellaneous Courts (2005-). More details is available here.