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Tagged PDF Best Practice Guide: Syntax

This guide is also intended to be useful for those performing detailed accessibility testing on PDF documents claiming conformance with PDF/UA, or on PDF documents claiming to be accessible according to some other specification.

A publication of the PDF/UA Technical Working Group, this document is intended for developers implementing tagged PDF and PDF/UA. Others (including authors with some technical knowledge of PDF’s accessibility mechanisms) may also benefit from this document.

Keep in mind that as of today most PDF documents do not follow these recommendations.

Any issues or concerns with this publication can be logged by creating an issue in this GitHub repository. These issues will be addressed in future editions of this publication.


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Originally published by the PDF Association in 2019 and updated July 26, 2023 with corrections to the documents tags to meet current best-practices.

The Tagged PDF Best Practice Guide includes guidance for all structure element types and attributes, and provides forward-looking guidance for PDF 2.0.

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Comments are welcome! Please email pdfua@pdfa.org with your suggestions.


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