Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Indent and Justify Command.

Indent and Justify Command

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated August 26, 2021)
This tip applies to Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


WordPerfect has a command, F4, which indents a paragraph from the left margin and justifies it. Some folks would like to see such a command in Word, but there is no single command that will perform this operation. You can indent a paragraph by pressing Ctrl+M (indents the left margin to the next tab stop) and you can justify it by pressing Ctrl+J (makes sure the text extends all the way from the left to the right margin). This two-step approach to the desired formatting is the best one can do, without creating a macro to combine the two steps.

There is one advantage to doing this formatting in Word over doing it in WordPerfect, however. In WordPerfect you need to select the entire paragraph before pressing F4, but in Word you only need to make sure that the insertion point is within the paragraph you want to format.

An even better approach in Word is to create a style that defines how you want the formatted paragraph to appear. Simply follow the steps for creating a style (as described in other issues of WordTips) and make sure that the style has the desired indents, justification, line spacing, font size, etc. Then, you can apply all these attributes in one simple step by applying the style to the paragraph.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (319) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Indent and Justify Command.

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. ...

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