Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Preventing the Left Margin of a Footer from Moving.

Preventing the Left Margin of a Footer from Moving

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated September 3, 2016)

1

In Judi's law office, all documents must have a footer identifying the file name and location. She has modified the Normal template to include this field, and it is set at the left margin of the page. However, when the user modifies the document part way through and changes the left-hand margin (for an indented portion of the document, for example), the footer moves with the margin. Judi wonders how she can prevent this from happening.

There are a couple of ways you can approach this problem. First, your users need to understand the difference between margins and indents. From the description, it sounds like the user is inserting section breaks around the portion they want indented and then adjusting the page margin to implement the indent. In this instance, the left margin of the footer moves to match what Word perceives as the new page margin.

The correct way to do this—so that the left margin of the footer is not affected—is to simply indent the paragraphs. In the main body of the text, select the paragraphs to be indented and then adjust the left indent setting for them. (An even easier way to do this is to define styles for your commonly indented paragraphs and then just apply the styles as necessary.) The position of the footer won't move at all, even though the paragraphs are now indented.

Another approach is to change how you are creating your footer. All you need to do is to insert a text box or a frame within the footer area and place your field code within it. You can adjust the width of the text box or frame to meet your needs and you should format it as desired. (For instance, you'll probably want to make sure there is no border on the text box or frame.) You can position the text box or frame, using techniques described in other issues of WordTips, so that the positioning is calculated from the left edge of the page rather than from the page margin. In this way, no matter how your page margin may change, the text box or frame remains unmovable.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (12094) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Preventing the Left Margin of a Footer from Moving.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Resetting Menus to Their Default

After a few weeks, months, or years of editing Word's menus, you may forget what the original menus looked like. Don't ...

Discover More

Cell Movement After Enter

What happens when you press Enter in a cell depends on how you have Excel configured. Here's the way you can control the ...

Discover More

Adding Dashes between Letters

When processing some text data, you may need to perform some esoteric function, such as adding dashes between letters. ...

Discover More

Comprehensive VBA Guide Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) is the language used for writing macros in all Office programs. This complete guide shows both professionals and novices how to master VBA in order to customize the entire Office suite for their needs. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2010 today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Using a Portion of a Document's Filename in a Header

Headers and footers add a nice finishing touch to a document you plan on printing. You may want all sorts of information ...

Discover More

Keeping Centered Headers and Footers Centered

Headers and footers provide a nice final touch for your printed documents. If you want to expertly align text in those ...

Discover More

Turning Off "Link to Previous" by Default

When you add a new section to a document, you may want the headers or footers in that section to be different from those ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is four more than 1?

2016-09-06 08:54:36

Jennifer Thomas

While the text box/frame solution would technically work, I don't recommend it unless there is no other option because text boxes can cause issues when cutting/pasting/converting to another document format. Frames in Word are also known to cause other hard-to-fix problems (like page number sequence errors), so unless you are skilled at working with HTML components in Word, stay away from using them.

The bottom line is to remember that page margin = header/footer margins, so use the indented formatting as described instead.


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.