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: Automatically Setting Right Leader Tabs.

Automatically Setting Right Leader Tabs

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated December 17, 2011)

There are many times when your formatting needs call for setting a right tab at the right margin, and making sure it has either an underscore or dot leader on it. This is done quite often if you are creating "manually" laid-out forms. Setting such tabs can be a hassle, however, since it involves the use of the dialog boxes or the ribbon and repetitive actions.

If you set quite a few such tabs, you may be interested in the RightTab VBA macro shown below. When run, it examines each paragraph you have selected, clears all their tab stops, and sets a single right tab at the right margin with an underscore leader.

Sub RightTab()
    Dim MarPos As Integer, NewPos As Integer
    Dim ThisPar As Paragraph

    MarPos = Selection.PageSetup.PageWidth - _
      Selection.PageSetup.LeftMargin - _
      Selection.PageSetup.RightMargin - _
      Selection.PageSetup.Gutter

    Set myrange = Selection.Range
    For Each ThisPar In myrange.Paragraphs
        NewPos = MarPos - ThisPar.RightIndent
        ThisPar.TabStops.ClearAll
        ThisPar.TabStops.Add Position:=NewPos, _
          Alignment:=wdAlignTabRight, _
          Leader:=wdTabLeaderLines
    Next ThisPar
End Sub

The macro will work even if the selected paragraphs have differing right margins from each other. It also takes into account your current page setup.

If you don't want the macro to remove all the tab stops already set in the selected paragraphs, remove the line that uses the ClearAll method. If you want to use dot leaders on the tab instead of underscores, then change the wdTabLeaderLines constant name to wdTabLeaderDots.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (1875) 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: Automatically Setting Right Leader Tabs.

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

Adding Information after the Endnotes

Endnotes appear at the end of the document, right? Not always, as Word provides a way that you can actually add as much ...

Discover More

Controlling the Plotting of Empty Cells

When creating a chart from information that contains empty cells, you can direct Excel how it should proceed. This tip ...

Discover More

Formatting Fractions

Need to have a great looking fraction in a document? It's relatively easy to do if you apply the formatting techniques ...

Discover More

Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!

MORE WORDTIPS (MENU)

Entering Tabs in a Table

When press the Tab key while entering info into a table, Word dutifully moves to the next table cell. If you don't want to do ...

Discover More

Changing Default Tab Stops

If you don't explicitly set tab stops in a paragraph, Word relies upon a default tab stop distance. You can adjust that ...

Discover More

Precisely Adjusting Tab Stops

When you need to be very specific about where a tab stop is located, you'll want to become familiar with the Tabs dialog box. ...

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 for this tip:

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. 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 9 - 7?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the menu interface (Word 97, Word 2000, Word 2002, or Word 2003)? This site is for you! If you use a later version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the ribbon 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.

Links and Sharing