Basic Tech Literacy: Using Automatic Dating

Lesson: Don’t leave proper dating up to chance and never misdate a document again.

Word processing software has a function that inserts a self-updating date in documents. Finding out how to do that is the first step. Inserting this field in templates is the next.

First, the self-updating date field is under “Insert,” “Quick Parts,” “Field” and “Date.” You can choose the format of that date to be one of the following, based on context and purpose:



Friday, November 20, 2020

November 20, 2020

If appropriate, this field also allow you to add a time stamp, either in conjunction with the date or alone:

9:51 PM

11/20/2020 9:51 PM


Second, insert this in templates that would call for it. Examples are:

- Dates of Signature on Pleadings

- Dates on Certificates of Service

- Dates on Correspondence

- Dates of Execution on Subpoenas

Automatic dating removes the possibility of human error on documents that have to be updated on a same-day basis, over and over again. No more dupe and revise errors on dated templates.

This post is part of Basic Tech Tips for Legal Pros, available for download at

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