Acrobat Typewriter Tool for Filling Forms

This tip is provided by Dee Crocker of the Oregon State Bar Professional Liability Fund.

Lawyers often receive or download a form that is not "fillable" in its native format. Options for filling out the form include printing it out and filling it in with a typewriter, creating a form with Acrobat or other similar software, or running it through a program like OmniForm. However, all of these methods take time and, if the form in question will be a one-time use, there is a shorter, simpler way to fill out the form and send it out -- the Acrobat Typewriter Tool.

In Acrobat 8.0, under the Tools menu select “Typewriter”. A cursor will appear. Place the cursor wherever you want to insert text and start typing. The default font for the Typewriter tools is Courier, and that cannot be altered in Acrobat 8. However some customization is possible through increase and decrease of font size and line spacing. An enhancement to the Typewriter Tool available in Acrobat 9.0 is the ability to change the font type, color, size, and spacing. Additionally in Acrobat 9 (Standard and Pro) there is no need to continue to select the Typewriter Tool each time the user moves to a new section of the page. Once finished filling out the form simply save it, and email or upload to the intended recipient.

For users of Acrobat 8.0 Pro or Acrobat 9.0 Pro, another use of the Typewriter Tool is to enable it for those who only have the Acrobat Reader. If creating a fillable form is too time consuming or difficult, simply enable the Typewriter Tool by going to Tools - Typewriter - Enable Typewriter Tool for Adobe Reader. Then save the document. When a user with only the Reader opens the document, the Reader will prompt the user to use the Typewriter tool to fill out the form.