WD97: How to Suppress Blank Lines During a Mail Merge

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Article ID: 264723 - View products that this article applies to.
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Summary

During a mail merge in Microsoft Word, you may want to remove blank lines from the merged document if no information is available for that line.

For additional information about how to suppress a blank line when you use a conditional statement (IF field), click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
264787 WD97: Blank Line Is Not Suppressed in a Conditional Mail Merge

More information

Frequently, in mail merges that involve addresses, there is a second line for the street address. This second line is normally used for a suite or apartment number. In order to close the "gap" in the address when no data exists for that merge field, make sure you do not place any spaces, punctuation, or anything else except merge fields on that second line. If there is anything else on that line, that line appears in all merges.

NOTE: Each line must end with a paragraph mark (¶) in order for Word to suppress the line, if the result of the MERGEFIELDS is blank. If the line ends with a New Line character, Word cannot suppress a blank line.

The mail merge feature evaluates each line as the merge is performed. If there is any text on the line, that line appears in the merge result. If there is no text on the line, but there is a merge field, the mail merge feature checks to see whether there is any data for the merge field. If there is no data for the merge field, that line is not created in the merge result.

To change this feature setting, follow these steps:

NOTE: You must be in the mail merge Main (form) document to change the setting for the merge.
  1. On the Tools menu, click Mail Merge.
  2. In the Mail Merge Helper dialog box, click Merge.

    NOTE: You must select the main document and data source for the merge before you perform step 2.
  3. In the Merge dialog box, under When Merging Records, click either:
    • Don't print blank lines when data fields are empty.

      -or-
    • Print blank lines when data fields are empty.
  4. Click Close in the Merge dialog box, and then click Close in the Mail Merge Helper.

    NOTE: If you made no changes in the Merge dialog box, the Close button is not available. Click Cancel instead.

References

For more information about suppressing blank lines in mail merges, click Contents and Index on the Help menu, click the Index tab in Word Help, type the following text
troubleshoot mail merge
and then double-click the selected text to go to the "Blank lines are showing in the merged documents" topic. If you are unable to find the information you need, ask the Office Assistant.

Properties

Article ID: 264723 - Last Review: June 19, 2014 - Revision: 2.0
Applies to
  • Microsoft Word 97 Standard Edition
Keywords: 
kbinfo kbmerge KB264723
Retired KB Content Disclaimer
This article was written about products for which Microsoft no longer offers support. Therefore, this article is offered "as is" and will no longer be updated.

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