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Deborah Savadra

Deborah Savadra, over the course of her career, has worked in law offices as a legal secretary, paralegal, and...

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Adriana Linares

Adriana Linares is a law practice consultant and legal technology coach. After several years at two of Florida’s largest...

Episode Notes

Microsoft Word has a feature specifically for creating a table of authorities but many are still intimidated when it comes to using the software. In this episode of New Solo, Legal Office Guru Deborah Savadra joins host Adriana Linares to explain the details of creating tables of authority in Word. They review everything from dialog boxes and categories to styles and pagination. They also discuss the complaints they hear the most and the easiest ways for lawyers to save time and prevent mistakes while using Word’s tables of authority software.

Deborah Savadra, over the course of her career, has worked in law offices as a legal secretary, paralegal, and technology “fixer upper.”

Special thanks to our sponsors, Clio, Answer1, Perfectit, and Unbundled Attorney.


New Solo

Word Up 2 Creating Tables of Authority with Ease



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Adriana Linares: Hey, welcome to another episode of New Solo on the Legal Talk Network. I am Adriana Linares. I am your host. I am a legal technology trainer and consultant. My job is to move about the world helping lawyers use technology better, and my guest also has that same job. I am going to introduce her in just a moment, but before we get started, I of course want to take a moment to thank our sponsors.

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So we are going to do another technology high wire act today. If you are a regular listener to New Solo, typically we just have a regular podcast that we do and my partner Allan Mackenzie and I, a couple episodes ago, decided we wanted to do — add a video recording to talk about Microsoft Word.

It was a bit of a high wire act, but I think we pulled it off and we got lots of nice feedback on it. And we wanted to do another one, so that’s what we are going to do, this is hopefully going to be another video recording. If all goes well, you will find the link to the video on the Show Pages at  HYPERLINK “”

So what we are going to talk about today is a very sexy and exciting topic and I have a sexy and exciting guest. We are going to talk about Table of Authorities in Microsoft Word, right Deborah?

Deborah Savadra: Oh right. And that’s a very sexy and exciting topic.

Adriana Linares: So Deborah, please introduce yourself. I am so happy to have you on this show. Thank you for taking the time. Tell us about yourself.

Deborah Savadra: Well, first of all, I am really jazzed to be here. I am the Blogger in Chief over at  HYPERLINK “” And what I do over there is to teach lawyers and legal staff how to use Microsoft Office in a way that helps them move their law practice forward and gets things done more efficiently.

So I have been in the legal field probably over 20 years in various positions; legal assistant, paralegal, technology trainer. I have spent some time in Corporate America as a technology trainer and so I bring that sort of peculiar bit of mixed experience between legal and technology to what I do at  HYPERLINK “”

Adriana Linares: Well, I will tell you, I am one of your biggest fans.

Deborah Savadra: Thank you.

Adriana Linares: I love your tips. I get your newsletter. I get everything you put out there, and one of the things that I actually — so we do the same thing in the real world, right, we go out, we help lawyers, like I said, use technology better. And when we do training, when Allan and I do training on Table of Authorities, we always send a link to your — and let me put this in the video real quick, to your guide on, you call it the Table of Authorities-The Ultimate Guide.

And if you are listening to this, you can find it on  HYPERLINK “” And I am sure there’s a link somehow if you just google it to find it. But this is such a very valuable resource, and I know that what we are going to do now is talk about Table of Authorities and go through your tips one by one Deborah.

So you sent me a typical training document that you would use that I have got pulled up for those of you who are going to be able to watch this through the video. We are actually going to work our way through all of Deborah’s tips, but we will also be very conscious and cognizant of clearly describing what it is we are talking about when we do this, so that if you happen just to be listening that hopefully if you are familiar with Table of Authorities or at least familiar with Word, you can sort of visually figure out how this works. Because the truth is Table of Authorities are actually kind of easy, they have not changed much over the years, right Deborah, we haven’t really seen the development of Table of Authorities much.


Deborah Savadra: Truly, truly. It hasn’t changed all that much. It hasn’t really gotten that much better frankly.

Adriana Linares: Yeah, yeah, it’s a little hard to — well, I shouldn’t say it’s too hard. I mean I feel like people get confused until they sit through a training class and then everything becomes really clear. So yeah, go ahead.

Deborah Savadra: I was just going to say, it’s one of those features that people use just often enough to be frustrated with it, but not often enough to really master it, to really become adept with it. I think that’s the problem with Table of Authorities. It’s one of those things that unless you are in a really heavy appellate practice or your trial courts actually require this, you touch it just enough to be really angry with it, but not enough to really get good at it.

Adriana Linares: Great. And you are right, I mean that’s exactly what it is and then there’s all these little nuances that you should know and understand. So why don’t we dive into just where do you find the ability to automatically create a table of contents in Word?

And we should say one more thing, we are going to do this in Microsoft Word on the PC. It’s not that different on the Mac side, but of course you have got to sort of figure your way through some of the changes, but the tips and the suggestions are likely going to be the same, and again, if there’s a big outcry for the Mac version of this recording and podcast, we will happily do it. But for now everyone listening, just so you know, we are doing this on a PC, and I happen to be in Word 2016.

So I am going to start by clicking on the References tab. So under the References tab, where you find Table of Contents, Footnotes, Research, Citations, Captions, Index, all the way into the far right is the section of the ribbon titled Table of Authorities.

So Deborah, when you are talking to people, once you get them here to the ribbon, where they are looking at the Table of Authorities section, what’s the first thing you tell them about the buttons that are on there?

Deborah Savadra: Well, before we even get to the buttons, a couple of things that I try to cover with people is to make sure number one that your major editing has been completed before you start marking this. Because if you are moving major sections of text around, you could separate the codes that we are going to go over in a moment from the actual citations and you can really screw this up royally.

The second thing that I tend to tell people is if you are going to work with this, and we will get to this in a moment, you want to turn on the hidden text, because the codes that Microsoft Word actually uses to mark these particular citations are hidden text, and you want to be able to see them so that while you are working with it, you want to make sure that you are doing things correctly.

Adriana Linares: Excellent.

Deborah Savadra: But getting back to the marking the citations —

Adriana Linares: So wait, I will go ahead and do that, just in case — we should talk about that, because a lot of times people don’t know how to show those codes. So I am going to go back to the Home Button and I am going to look for the pilcrow, the paragraph symbol that we are used to seeing sometimes in legal on the ribbon.

So for those of you who open up Microsoft Word on a blank document sometimes and you see that paragraph symbol and you don’t know why it’s there, and then you start typing and you see the spaces, it’s because your show — let me see what it actually says, I am going to read it to you, it says Show/Hide and then if you hover over it, if that button is depressed it’s going to show you those non-printing characters, paragraph marks and other formatting symbols.

But what Deborah is suggesting is turn that on during this process, even if you hate it, it’s going to be very helpful in making sure that you aren’t troubled by some of these nuances that we are dealing with, with Table of Authorities.

So I am going to click that on and then again for those of you watching the video, you are going to see that now I can see paragraph symbols and I can see a little dot between words, where the space bar was hit.

So now we have done that Deborah, my major editing is complete and now I am going to go back over to references and I am looking at the Table of Authorities section of the ribbon.

Deborah Savadra: Okay. The basic steps of dealing with this are this, you are going to select the citation that you want to mark. You are going to click that Mark Citation button on the References tab in that Table of Authorities section, and a dialog box will pop up that will show you the choices that you have and allow you to edit the finer points of that and put that in the correct section and mark that citation.

Now, as you are marking citations, the first instance of any particular citation you are going to mark in one way and then the second and subsequent citations you are going to mark in a slightly different way. But we will go over that as we get into those.

Adriana Linares: Okay. Do you want me to start right here, so I have got a citation, a federal citation, is this the first one, I hope I didn’t miss one.

Deborah Savadra: Sure, sure, go ahead.

Adriana Linares: So I am simply going to highlight from beginning to end everything that I want to go into the table. So I have gone from the Fed. R App. P., bunch of numbers, close paren, but I am not picking up the period because that citation happens to be at the end of the sentence, right?

Deborah Savadra: Right, right.


Adriana Linares: Otherwise if I picked up that period it would get pulled into the Table of Authorities.

Deborah Savadra: Exactly.

Adriana Linares: Okay, so we have highlighted my first citation.

Deborah Savadra: Yeah, in the References tab, in that Table of Authorities area, you are going to click that Mark Citation button.

Adriana Linares: Great. And if you are a keyboard person, I want to remind everyone that when you hover over any button in Microsoft Word, actually most programs, if you just place your mouse on top of it, if there is a keyboard shortcut that you can use, it will show it to you.

So if you are a keyboard person you could at this time press Alt + Shift + I, which is hard to kind of do all at once, but you would press Alt + Shift + I together and it would produce the same result as my clicking on the Mark Citation button, which is, it’s going to pop up a dialog box that says Mark Citation.

Deborah Savadra: Okay. So in the Mark Citation dialog box what you are seeing first of all is the text that you have actually selected there, down underneath that you are seeing something called Category. Now, for this particular citation you would probably want to choose a different category, say maybe Statutes.

Adriana Linares: So the category is when the Table of Authority gets created, it’s going to break down cases versus statutes versus rules versus regulations and we can’t get into it now, but you can even make up your own.

So if I were to scroll down here, I will see a number 8, number 9, and that’s for, if you wanted to include a web citation, like something from Google maybe, Google Scholar, you can even make up your own. Now, that’s an advanced move that we can’t get into, but I do want to make it clear, or at least say out loud, that you don’t have to stick to the categories that are given to us in case there’s a citation that doesn’t fit inside those categories.

All right, so we talked about select the text, that’s the first part, and then we select a category, which is basically what type of citation this is. And then this section Deborah, on Short Citation, it really confuses people. So what exactly is the Short Citation?

Deborah Savadra: The Short Citation is going to be the form that’s going to be used for the second and subsequent citations throughout the brief. So if you — particularly if someone is being very, very consistent about the way that they reference a case in the rest of the brief, you can edit that in that particular box and signify that as the Short Citation form.

So you notice that there are several of them that are listed down here and they are not really Short Citations in here, but this is — when we get to the point where we are marking a subsequent citation of something, this is going to become important. So that is how we want to signify the second subsequence.

Adriana Linares: Right. And I think what I like to remind people of is sometimes you will get into a pleading that several people have worked on and there is the way the citation was typed out the very first time it appears and then the next person that works on the document might use the subsequent or Short Citation. They might type it in a little bit differently than the third person. So it’s one of these tools that even though it’s automated and it helps, a human really still has to sort of review and keep a close eye on what they are doing.

So in this case do you think I would shorten this citation or leave it with all those subsequent sections of the citation in here?

Deborah Savadra: I am not really an expert on the Bluebook format, but I generally tend to leave it and then if you have — like I said, if you have someone who is very consistent about that Short Citation, then you can use that.

Adriana Linares: Great. Now, to the right of the dialog box we have got a bunch of options. Next Citation, Mark, Mark All, category with the ellipsis … which goes back to the point we were making earlier that if you want to define your own category, you would click on that button.

So what we have done so far is we have highlighted the text, we have clicked the Mark Citation dialog box, we have confirmed that where it says selected text is actually the text that we want to go into the Table of Authorities. We could edit in that box as a Selected Text, if we accidentally picked up that period or any other little piece of the citation that we don’t want. We selected our category and then we took a look at the Short Citation and edit or not edit depending on your familiarity with the way citations are marked throughout the rest — that same citation is marked throughout the rest of the document.

So I would assume Deborah that now I press Mark or can I go crazy and say Mark All and would it find all the instances where this citation was used in the document?

Deborah Savadra: If the Short Citation form is consistent throughout the document, then it should find it using the Mark All. I tend not to trust it frankly.

Adriana Linares: Me too. You know what, I tell people the same thing. I tell them you can hit that button, but you better review it.

Deborah Savadra: I mean, I actually go to the extent of printing out the brief twice and sitting down with another human being and calling out cases and page numbers. I mean that’s how old school I do it because I don’t trust the software.


Adriana Linares: Trust it a little bit people, let’s not get that crazy.

All right, so I am going to click Mark at this point and the single mark, because like we said, unless you are the only person that has worked on this entire brief, and you know that throughout the rest of that document you created a Short Citation exactly the same way as you did in this Short Citation example, then I would suggest going with Mark.

So I am just going to click Mark. Great. And so now, because we turned on our codes, because we turned on the Show/Hide, now what I am looking at looks kind of funky, and if you are not familiar with this in Word, you will get used to it, don’t panic, but what I see is my citation and then I see some code that has been inserted and it’s got the squiggly parens and then it says TA 1, then inside of quotes it has the exact text that I had highlighted. Then there is /s and then again the exact text that I had highlighted, because I didn’t bother to modify the Short Citation in this example.

So Deborah, do you want to break down at all the code and what it’s telling people when they see it?

Deborah Savadra: Yeah. Between those two curly brackets what you are seeing, like Adriana said, you see a TA, which stands for the Table of Authorities code and then you are seeing, because this is the first instance of this particular citation in this particular brief, what we are seeing between those two curly brackets is the long citation form. This is saying, okay, here is our first marker for this particular case or authority. You see the TA and then you see L and then in quotes it’s the long form of the citation.

And then after that it’s /S and that is the short form of the citation, which is something that’s going to be important, because that’s how the subsequent instances of that citation are going to relate back to the long citation to make sure that all the page numbers for a particular case or other authority are going to line up on the same entry.

Adriana Linares: So essentially the — I am sorry to interrupt you Deborah, I just want to not lose this point. So essentially the backward slash L (L) that you see in the code is equal to selected text in the Mark Citation dialog box and then the forward slash S (/S) that you see would be equal to whatever the short citation would or should be throughout the rest of the document?

Deborah Savadra: Correct. Correct.

Adriana Linares: Okay.

Deborah Savadra: Now, the next thing you see after that Short Citation is /C and then the number 2, and if you go back to that Mark Citation dialog box, in the middle there where it says Category, if you drop that down, you notice that Statutes, which is what we chose, is actually the second category in that list and that’s how Word is keeping up with what section to place this particular citation in.

Those first seven sections are actually sort of predetermined by Microsoft Word and then you have up to between 8 and 15, you can actually designate your own, but that /C 2 is actually what is going to put that Fed. R App. Procedure into the Statutes section of the Table of Authorities.

Adriana Linares: Yeah, that’s great. So it’s actually very easy to understand what that code is once you walk through it and get this figured out.

All right, so great, so we have marked it for the first time. Let’s go mark one more just for the sake of marking a second one, is there a way that I could tell Word automatically, hey, go find the next time that a citation appears, or do I have to scroll through manually all the time?

Deborah Savadra: I have not been a big fan of using the next citation button in that Mark Citation dialog box, but it does a lot of times find the next citation in the brief. It looks for particular markers of things that it recognizes as some sort of authority. So if you click on Mark Citation again on the References tab and use that next citation, it will probably find the next citation in the brief.

Adriana Linares: Yeah. And I have had some funny instances where it looks for, let me see if I can remember, a v., an Id, array, and if for some reason you are using any of that outside of a citation, it will stop, but you would just ignore it.

But anyway, again, it’s one of those things, sort of like the Mark All option, go ahead and try it, but just be sure that you as the human is going to go through and visually make sure that it’s not missed anything.

I think the way you talked about doing it Deborah, maybe for me not necessarily printing it, but really going through and making sure all the citations have been caught is going to be very helpful.

So I am going to scroll through and find the next one. I should have just left it. Maybe I will just — just for the sake of speed here, I am going to say — and you are more familiar with your document, if I have missed one, you just tell me to make —

Deborah Savadra: Probably if you go down to about page 15, now let’s see.


Adriana Linares: I am around there. I should find another one real quick. Okay, here is a good one. All right, so again, I have got a citation here, so I am going to highlight it and I am going to close that Mark Citation dialog box, although let me say this out loud, you don’t have to close the Mark Citation dialog box every time you want to mark a new citation. You can leave it open, just know that the clicking behind the document or clicking on the document, sometimes you have to click twice to actually just get behind the Mark Citation dialog box, but it will stay there.

Or if you are not going through top to bottom marking citations, then you can easily close it and remember that you can always click the Mark Citation button or you can hit Alt + Shift + I.

So I found my next citation and I am going to highlight, again as Deborah told us to do, I am going to highlight that citation and I am just going to click Mark Citation. And this becomes an exercise in wash, rinse, repeat. I have got that Mark Citation dialog box that has popped back up. It’s showing me my selected text.

So this says Gupta v. Florida Board of Regents. A lot of times what you might edit out of here are the extra pages, but if you just want to leave it as is, then you are looking at the selected text that will go into the Table of Authorities. I am going to do the same thing and change my category because it’s stuck to Statutes, but this is a case, so I am going to let my Table of Authorities builder know that this is actually going to be a case so that should be Category 1, based on what we learned a few minutes ago.

And then I am really going to shorten this one, because this one is really long. So now in this example, where we have got Short Citation I am going to back it on out all the way to maybe someone called it just Gupta; maybe they used Gupta v. and the whole thing, however they refer to it, again as Deborah suggested, if there’s consistency throughout, then this is very helpful. But if there’s not, then you are still going to have to mark it a second time.

So I am going to go ahead and edit that Short Citation just for training purposes, click the Mark button and I have now marked my second citation.

So Deborah, let me stop real quick and we are going to take just a quick break, hear a couple of message from our sponsors, and when we get back, the next thing we are going to do is Mark Subsequent Citation and go from there. We will be right back.


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Adriana Linares: All right, we are back and we are talking Tables of Authorities, and so far we have done a quick review of the Table of Authorities section of the ribbon inside of References. We have talked a lot about the Mark Citation dialog box itself. We have marked two citations just during this quick training session and now we are going to show everyone, talk through how to mark a citation when it appears for the second or the third or the fourth time again in your document.

I am going to go ahead and for the purpose of just training I am just going to close this dialog box, but remember I said earlier, that if you want to you can certainly leave that dialog box open, just note that you might have to sort of click kind of behind it.

So Deborah, I am just going to highlight some text here and we will pretend that it’s the second citation. Okay, so here’s a citation for the second time, I am going to highlight it, and then Deborah, walk me through the steps of marking the second instance of a citation or a third or a fourth.

Deborah Savadra: Okay. Now that you have got the text selected, you go back to the References tab and click on the Mark Citation button. It’s going to bring up that Mark Citation dialog box again and this procedure is going to be very slightly different. Because you are dealing with a second or subsequent citation of a particular case, what you want to do instead is underneath where it says Short Citation, you want to scroll down and find the Short Citation that you actually designated in the Long Citation code that you marked earlier.

So you want to just click on the instance of Gupta that’s already there and then click Mark.

Adriana Linares: Exactly. And oftentimes if it is exactly the same; again, if consistency has been part of creating this document, it will find it and highlight it for you in that long list of the Short Citations. So it can be very helpful and it’s another reason to really think about consistency throughout your document, which you want anyway.


So as you can see it actually found it and had highlighted it for me, and then I’m just going to click “Mark” and then just for good training practice which we both are, Deborah, talk us through the code now that we see, it’s a little bit different than the code we saw for the first citation.

Deborah Savadra: It is and that’s because again it’s a short citation code. So this time between those curly brackets you see, the TA and that you don’t see the slash L (/L) or the slash C (/C) because those things have already been taken care of in the first marking of that particular authority.

All you’re going to see is the slash s (/S) and then the short form — the short citation form, which is what’s going to relate that back to the original code where we marked it for the first time.

Adriana Linares: Yep, and that’s it. And like we said, this is basically an exercise in wash, rinse, repeat at this point. You’re finding your citations, you’re marking them for either the first time or you’re marking them for the second, the third, the fourth time, and you go through, and Deborah, do you suggest marking everything at the end, like you said, when you’re hopefully — your major editing has been complete, a lot of people I think they do want to mark as they go along, but you already suggested, that’s not a great idea, want to try and save it for the end.

Deborah Savadra: Absolutely, because if you are still moving large blocks of text, there’s a couple of risks that you take there. Number one, you could potentially separate the TA code from the citation that it actually attaches to. And number two, you could accidentally move a short citation up above a long citation in the brief, and that’s going to really mess with the Table of Authorities when it’s generated.

So if you’re just tweaking language, if you’re at editing stage where you’re just kind of tweaking the language a little bit, it’s fine to go ahead and start marking that stuff but get past the point where you’re moving things around before you really start marking these.

Adriana Linares: Excellent. Well, let’s go and throw in a Table of Authorities real quick because I don’t think that we could go on too much more about marking and marking again the first time or subsequent time, that’s a very easy exercise. So I’m going to press Ctrl+Home to take myself to the top of the document, and just for the sake of training, we’re just going to insert that Table of Authorities right here at the top.

So essentially what I’ve done is I’m putting my cursor where I want the Table of Authorities to go, right?

Deborah Savadra: Right.

Adriana Linares: Okay, so I’ve got my cursor there, making sure it’s a normal plain text, then what do I do?

Deborah Savadra: Okay, you are going to go back to the References tab and over on the right, you’ll see, in that Table of Authorities section, Insert Table of Authorities.

Adriana Linares: Makes perfect sense. Okay, and so now we get the dialog box; that gives me my option. So let’s walk through this because this can be confusing too.

Deborah Savadra: Most of the time if you’re looking at this dialog box, you’re going to have the category all selected, which means basically, it’s going to pull in all of the categories. Because when a Table of Authorities feature builds a Table of Authorities, it’s actually building several different tables. It’s building one for cases, one for statutes, one for other authorities, et cetera. So you can’t actually select one or more of these or you can simply select all, but you’ve got some other options on here as well.

Adriana Linares: Yeah, and the only example — I don’t think I’ve ever seen this in practice, but the only example I could give is, if you wanted all the cases to start on one page and statutes to start on a new page, I mean, you can certainly do that manually with section breaks or page breaks, but again, if you just maybe have some specific needs, requirements or just ticks, and how you create documents that might be why you do that, but for the most part, we just click all here and then over — that’s on the right side of the dialog box and then over on the left, it’s giving us a little print preview of what that Table of Authorities might look like. And that’s going to change in just a second as we make some formatting changes on that dialog box below it.

What is passim? I feel like I always have to explain whether a user wants to check or uncheck the use passim option but I’ll tell you, I say to them do you not know what passim means and they’ll say, no, I’ve never heard that. And I say, well, uncheck the box then.

Deborah Savadra: Some courts will actually allow you to use this if you’re citing the same case over and over and over again, and there are so many numbers that — page numbers that it just makes sense to say, look, we’re citing it everywhere you can use passim.

That’s one of those things that you’re going to want to check with the court clerk about, but like you said, if you don’t even know what it means, probably safer to uncheck it.

Adriana Linares: Yeah, what I say to people is use passim, equals it’s freaking everywhere.

Deborah Savadra: Yeah. That’s it, that’s it. It’s on every page of the brief, just get used to it.

Adriana Linares: Right, okay, and what about keep original formatting, that’s — so I’m going to uncheck passim here and just because I think that’s more practice and I also think that’s regional. I forget where I’ve been that they use it, and again, you’re right, it might be based on the court that — yeah the region or the jurisdiction I was in. But what about keep original formatting? What does that mean exactly?


Deborah Savadra: Now, if you have actually italicized the case names and you want that formatting to appear in the Table of Authorities, you want to be sure to keep that clip checked.

Adriana Linares: Okay, great. Then I have got a choice of what my tab leader is going to look like in the actual Table of Authorities leading up to the page number where the first instance works, I mean, where all the instances are, not necessarily the first. And then, what is this section on formats from template, classic, distinctive? If I drop down that dialog box, I can see in the preview, but explain to people who might be just listening to this audio?

Deborah Savadra: You can actually — you can change these formats, but I tell you if you are doing it from the template, what you are actually getting is the body text and the header text styles that are actually coming from the document itself, you probably want the Table of Authorities to match the rest of the document. So 90% of the time you are probably going to want to just keep it as from template.

Adriana Linares: Great, and from template again like you described means it’s going to use the same font and maybe the same font size unless you’ve messed something up which is a whole another Microsoft Word training session, but great. So, I think what I am going to do then just again for the sake of training at time, I am going to go ahead and click “OK” and insert this very tiny Table of Authorities into our document.

Deborah Savadra: All right.

Adriana Linares: So now I am going to go ahead and turn off my show hide so that we can sort it for those of you viewing this in the video can sort of see a little bit what this Table of Authorities would look like.

So, Deborah, before we go on and ask you how we would modify this and sometimes we need to put the citation on a different line than the year, you know, how we get very picky —

Deborah Savadra: Uh-huh.

Adriana Linares: I am going to take another quick break so we can hear a message from our sponsors.


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Adriana Linares: Welcome back everyone. We are talking about Tables of Authorities and so far we have Mark Citations, we have Mark Subsequent Citations, and the last thing we did was insert the Table of Authorities into the document and I find that this is, Deborah, where we start to get a little picky about what we want Table of Authorities to look like.

Deborah Savadra: Right.

Adriana Linares: So give me a couple of quick tips for some of the most common asks or issues that people complain, cry or sometimes squeal with joy about?

Deborah Savadra: Well, first of all one of the things that people tend to complain about is that the text wrapping is not quite to their liking. You see that third instance with the Gupta v. Florida Board of Regents that cert denied is hanging out very, very close to the page numbers over on the right hand side, and a lot of people don’t like that. There are a couple of different ways that you can actually change that. If that’s the only case that you want to change that in, you can actually do something in the long citation form itself. So if we go to that particular citation that that’s on page 11 —

Adriana Linares: Okay. So I am actually going to go modify the code for the citation you are saying?

Deborah Savadra: You can do that, like I said there are two different ways you can do that. One of them is more efficient than the other but if you just have the one case that you feel like it’s not formatted correctly, this is a trick that actually one of my readers taught me.

Adriana Linares: Oh excellent, okay.

Deborah Savadra: Yeah, you can go over there, you put your cursor right before the cert denied within that TA code and do Shift+Enter.

Adriana Linares: Right, Shift+Enter.

Deborah Savadra: Now, you’re going to look at that and go, oh no, you have messed up my brief. You really haven’t because once you turn those codes off, once you turn show/hide off, that’s going to be completely invisible, but if you go back up to the Table of Authorities and refresh it, you will see that the line actually wraps right before the cert denied, so you are actually putting in a line wrap manually.

Adriana Linares: And you are doing it in the body of the document which you could also have done it right here in the Table of Authorities, like you said, I am assuming that was going to be the second way, you suggested we do it.


Deborah Savadra: Actually I wouldn’t suggest actually doing that within the Table of Authorities because whenever you refresh it, it’s going to come back.

Adriana Linares: Okay, so only do it in the Table of Authorities if you are literally about to file it.

Deborah Savadra: Right, right. The cleaner way to do this is to actually alter the styles, and you know as well as I do, that everything in Word, every piece of text that you touch in Word has a style attached to it, and there are two styles that are driving the Table of Authorities. One of them is for the Table of Authorities’ entry, all of these that you see of the Gupta v. Florida Board of Regents et cetera, and the other one is for the section headings, like Cases, for example.

Adriana Linares: Sure.

Deborah Savadra: So if you want to change the way that these wrap, if you want them to wrap a little bit earlier in the line, what I generally do just the easiest way to me to get to those styles, is to hit Shift+F1 to bring up the Reveal Formatting Pane over on the right.

Adriana Linares: Yep, uh-huh.

Deborah Savadra: Click on one of the entries, it really doesn’t matter which one. And you notice over on the left, under Paragraph, it says Paragraph Style, Table of Authorities.

Adriana Linares: Yeah, right here.

Deborah Savadra: That’s the style that’s actually controlling this. So if you click on that hyperlink where it says Paragraph Style —

Adriana Linares: So let’s take a quick moment to describe what a style is. A style is like an easy button in Word for formatting. So if every time you write a heading, you want it to be centered, bold, all caps, underlined. You can create a style that takes those formatting features into one easy button, because right now what you are probably doing is every time you want a heading you are having to stop you write statement of facts, Stop, Select, Bold, Center, Underline. Well, you can take a style, which we are not going to spend too much time on, but just to kind of whet your appetite to learn more about styles, you can say, hey, every time I need a heading, I want it to look exactly like this and that’s what styles are.

So every single element of a Word document has a style. And in this case where Deborah is pointing us to, is to these styles for a Table of Authorities, which in this case the easy button, so to speak, the style for Table of Authorities is that it’s Times New Roman. If you’re looking on the video, you will see in this dialog box that it says Times New Roman, it shows 14, and then in a box below it, it’s got a few more details about the style.

So I don’t want to spend too much time on this because I think it’s going to blow most people’s minds, but in here if I wanted all of my Table of Authorities to instead of being a size 14, be size 12, I would then click the obvious button here, Deborah?

Deborah Savadra: Oh, the Modify button.

Adriana Linares: Modify. I want to modify or change the style from 14 to 12. So I am going to click Modify, and I am going to find the section where it says 14, I am going to change it to 12, and then I am going to click “OK”, and then when I click “Apply”, if all things are working magically right, this whole Table of Authorities should change from 14 to 12. That is the power in styles, and since this isn’t a Styles customer, I can spend too much time on it, but I really wish that every Microsoft Word user would take some time to learn about Styles because they are so powerful and they are so helpful, and here’s an example of what I mean.

Boom, like magic, poof, for those of you not watching the video, you didn’t see that the whole Table of Authorities just changed from size 14 to 12, and it worked.

Deborah Savadra: Yeah, yeah. So in that same dialogue box you could actually go to the — go to Modify again, and this time click on Format in the lower left-hand corner?

Adriana Linares: Uh-huh.

Deborah Savadra: And go to Paragraph.

Adriana Linares: Uh-huh.

Deborah Savadra: And the part that needs adjusting to make that text wrap a little bit sooner is over on the left-hand side, in the middle you see indentation, if you tick up the one on the right, so it’s like maybe 0.5 — excuse me on the left-hand side and with the one that says Right, tick that up —

Adriana Linares: Maybe a half inchish?

Deborah Savadra: Yeah, maybe a half inch, yeah.

Adriana Linares: Okay.

Deborah Savadra: And then click “OK” there.

Adriana Linares: Click “OK” and then click “Apply”, any of those citations that wrap on that second line are going to indent about 0.5. It’s a magical mystical thing when it just happens.

So, Deborah, before — we have kind of walked through very quickly how to mark a citation, mark subsequent citations, understanding the codes, we have inserted the Table of Authorities, we have talked a little bit about how to modify, some look and feels of the Table of Authorities, if I need to add a new citation, so this whole thing gets done, I have got my Table of Authorities in there and I need to update the table, based on the fact that, one, we put a softer turn in a citation, in the document or I have added new citations, what’s the easiest way for me to update or refresh the Table of Authorities?


Deborah Savadra: There are two ways you can do it, depending on whether you’re more of a mouse person or a keyboard person. If you’re a keyboard person, if you get your cursor into the table somewhere and hit the F9 button, that will actually update the Table of Authorities.

You could also if you are more of a mouse person you can right-click —

Adriana Linares: Anywhere inside the Table of Authorities, you just got to click anywhere inside of it, right?

Deborah Savadra: And then choose update field from that contextual menu and it will update it then.

Adriana Linares: And you’re often running. What are some of the biggest issues that people — we talked about case citations wrapping awkwardly, which is one of your troubleshooting tips, and then let’s see, what about incorrect citations. I see you’ve got a video demo to that that I encourage listeners to go and watchers to go and make sure they watch your — you’ve got a great article on your Table of Authorities Ultimate Guide, so I will of course point everyone to go take a look at that, looks like you’ve got a video on modifying the styles that we just talked about very briefly, and don’t get confused by that, just go watch Deborah’s video, you’ve got a video on incorrect citations, and so, what do you mean by incorrect citations?

Deborah Savadra: Well, for example, look at that second citation on that page Dudley v. Wal-Mart Stores. You notice that has actually a pin site in it and that’s something you do not want in a Table of Authorities. In other words, it has the 166 F 3rd 1317 and then Comma 1323 (,1323), well, in your Table of Authorities you want a clean citation that doesn’t have that Comma 1323 (, 1323).

So what happened was, when I marked that citation for the long form, I picked up all of that text and I did not edit that out at the time that I marked it. Fortunately, I don’t have to go back and remark it, I can go back to that long citation form and actually edit that code and then when I refresh that table that pin site will be gone.

Adriana Linares: So, if I went to References and I — could I even do it — do it — do I have to go all the way down there or could I — yeah, I would have to go all the way into it. Okay, I won’t do it for training purposes now, but you’re saying again you would go back down into the document and edit the long citation, this “selected text” and then under that you’ll see the long citation, and then refresh our Table of Contents the way we did a few minutes ago. What about the cases in footnotes? How do we mark those?

Deborah Savadra: Yeah, that’s one of those little quirks. At least as of Microsoft Word 2010 there was a little bit of a ball group, who was not picking up these citations out of the footnotes and there is a fix for that. That’s one of those things you have to get one of your IT people to actually apply, but that is at least as of a couple of versions ago was a known bug where it was not picking up citations out of footnotes.

Adriana Linares: And so, I would have to maybe enter that one manually until the bug gets fixed or you update to a later version where the bug was fixed, but I bet you have in your awesome article here a link to how to fix that?

Deborah Savadra: I do. I have a link to the knowledgebase article from Microsoft that shows what that fix is and how that needs to be applied?

Adriana Linares: Excellent. Well, are there any other last sort of conversational tips, tricks or suggestions that you can give everyone?

Deborah Savadra: Well, once you get finished with checking the Table of Authorities, we have the Show/Hide turned on. You want to make sure before you refresh the Table of Authorities one more time, make sure that you’ve turned that Show/Hide off, because that is actually affecting your pagination and you don’t want to refresh these tables with that old show/hide pagination actually active, you want to make sure that those citations are actually pointing to the correct page numbers.

Adriana Linares: Yes, exactly. Excellent, excellent tip. Anything else that seems to always pop-up when we are talking about Table of Authorities with folks?

Deborah Savadra: If you’ve got citations that are actually coming up in the wrong section say that statute ended up in the Cases section, again that’s where you want to learn how these long citations are actually structured and you can go in and edit that so that that one is appearing in section two after that slash C (/C) instead of section one.

Adriana Linares: Right. So I would go down again back into the document, you want for sure your Show/Hide turned on, because you need to be able to see the code in order to learn to edit the code and I would change that — what was it, it was a forward slash —

Deborah Savadra: You would change C.

Adriana Linares: Yeah, right to us – no, it was the one in the two. Sorry, sorry, it’s the one and the two.

Deborah Savadra: Yes.

Adriana Linares: So if it’s in the Statutes section, but it should be a case then in that code you would change the one — no, the two to the one. Anyway, it’ll make sense when you go back because we’ve just talked about it.

So that’s great, those are all I think we’ve hit on the most commonly asked questions and the most commonly had issues.


So I want to thank you so much of course for your time, Deborah, but before I let you go, I want to make sure that you tell everyone again how they can find friend follow you and where they can get that awesome article on you used to call it Seven Mistakes of Table of Authorities and that’s how I always think of it, and you’ve really expanded on that what I’m looking at on your web page.

Deborah Savadra: Yeah, I’ve actually — I’ve actually still got that particular article, but I took the — I had several individual tutorials on how to mark a citation, how to mark a subsequent citation, how to insert and just put it all into that ultimate guide, so that was what I was attempting to do there, but I’ve got a particular category of posts that all deal with Table of Authorities. If you go to my site  HYPERLINK “” and scroll down on the right, there is something called “Popular Categories” and —

Adriana Linares: Oh. Top your list.

Deborah Savadra: — everything that’s in Table of Authorities is going to be listed under that tag rather. And each of those — each of those posts —

Adriana Linares: Actually –

Deborah Savadra: Here it is, seven ways to screw up a Table of Authorities, I love that.

Deborah Savadra: Yeah. And if particularly if you — there’s another one where — if you like to recycle brief text that’s got TOI markup in it, you’re going to want to read the article on how to recycle your legal briefs safely because that’s —

Adriana Linares: Oh, excellent.

Deborah Savadra: — that’s something that people do a lot, but at the end of any of these articles is an opportunity to download something that I call “My Ten Step Pre-Published Checklist”, which is ten steps for checking your brief and checking your Table of Authorities to make sure that you’re ready to print or PDF it before it goes off.

Adriana Linares: Excellent. Oh, that’s great, this is going to be a very valuable resource. I hope we get you some clicks over there, and then tell everyone again your name and where they can find you on any of the popular or unpopular social media sites and how they can get in touch with you?

Deborah Savadra: You can always find me at  HYPERLINK “” and I’m also on Twitter at @legalofficeguru.

Adriana Linares: And your website — Oh yeah, we already said at  HYPERLINK “” and then the Table of Authorities section, you are right is easy to find if you just go into the Categories section there.

Well, Deborah, I can’t thank you enough for your time and this has been very valuable. I hope this helps a lot of people out there and we clear up a lot of mysteries about Table of Authorities and I’m sure you don’t mind if someone emails you or contacts you on your website with any other weird questions might turn into a blog post for you?

Deborah Savadra: Absolutely, absolutely. If they want to email me, you can email me at [email protected]

Adriana Linares: Excellent. Well, thank you so much, Deborah. That brings us to the end of another great episode of New Solo. I’m Adriana Linares. Of course, thank you for listening. Make sure you join us next time, and remember, you’re not alone you are New Solo.

One last thing, if you enjoyed this podcast, please head over to iTunes and subscribe, rate and leave a good review for us, it really helps us, and it’s very much appreciated.


Outro: Thanks for listening to New Solo with host Adriana Linares. Tune in again to learn more about how to successfully run your new practice, solo, here on Legal Talk Network.


The views expressed by the participants of this program are their own and do not represent the views of, nor are they endorsed by Legal Talk Network, its officers, directors, employees, agents, representatives, shareholders, and subsidiaries. None of the content should be considered legal advice. As always, consult a lawyer.


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Episode Details
Published: December 22, 2017
Podcast: New Solo
Category: Best Legal Practices , Legal Technology
New Solo
New Solo

New Solo covers a diverse range of topics including transitioning from law firm to solo practice, law practice management, and more.

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