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 March 28, 2018)

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

Controlling Chart Gridlines

Gridlines are often added to charts to help improve the readability of the data presented in the chart. Here's how you ...

Discover More

Replacing Two Tabs with a Space in Limited Situations

The Find and Replace feature of Word is very powerful, allowing you to finely target exactly what you want to search. ...

Discover More

Viewing Two Worksheets At Once

If you need to work on two worksheets in the same workbook at the same time, Excel makes this rather easy to do. All you ...

Discover More

The First and Last Word on Word! Bestselling For Dummies author Dan Gookin puts his usual fun and friendly candor back to work to show you how to navigate Word 2013. Spend more time working and less time trying to figure it all out! Check out Word 2013 For Dummies today!

More WordTips (menu)

Automatically Changing Tab Stops in the Footer

If you use a tab stop in your footer to align information at the right margin, you may not get what you expect when you ...

Discover More

Clearing All Tab Stops

Tab stops allow you to modify the horizontal position at which text is positioned on a line. If you want to get rid of ...

Discover More

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 ...

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 five less than 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.