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Check accessibility while you work in Office apps

Use Accessibility Checker in Outlook, Word, PowerPoint, and Excelto check your email messages, documents, slides, and spreadsheets for accessibility issues while you work. This way you can make sure your Microsoft 365 content is easy for people with disabilities to read and edit.

There is a new version of Accessibility Checker available for the Word desktop app and will soon be available for other Microsoft 365  apps including Outlook, PowerPoint, and Excel.

To learn more about the new Accessibility Assistant go to Improve accessibility in your documents with the Accessibility Assistant.

To learn more about the real-time on-canvas notification of accessibility issues, go to Get real-time notification of accessibility issues while working on Microsoft 365 apps.

In this topic

Check accessibility while you work in Outlook 

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In Outlook, the Accessibility Checker runs automatically when composing an email, and a MailTip will provide a convenient nudge to correct accessibility issues before sending your email.

Accessibility issues MailTip in Outlook for Windows

Select File > Options > Ease of Access and select if you want to see accessibility notifications through a MailTip while you work, in certain scenarios, or only when you manually open the Accessibility Checker pane.

The default option is to show accessibility notifications in certain scenarios, and if any accessibility issues are detected, a MailTip appears to guide you to review suggestions and fix the issue.

The Accessibility Checker option in Outlook for Windows.

  • Show me accessibility warnings while I work

  • Show me accessibility warnings when:

    • At least one recipient prefers accessible content 

    • Using a dark background to compose a message. If you're composing in Black Theme with dark mode enabled, which is the default for this theme, the Accessibility Checker runs but shows notifications only when text contrast is insufficient. Any other issues will still appear in the Accessibility Checker pane, but they won't cause the MailTip to appear.

    • Composing a message to a large audience

    • At least one recipient is outside my organization

    • Composing a message with high importance

  • Show me accessibility warnings only when I open the accessibility checker

Check accessibility while you work in Word, Excel, and PowerPoint 

To be notified of accessibility issues in your Word, Excel, and PowerPoint documents as you continue working on them, tick the Keep accessibility checker running while I work checkbox.

The Accessibility Checker pane with the "Keep accessibility checker running while I work" checkbox

This adds the Accessibility button to your status bar, and keeps track of accessibility issues in real time. You can open the Accessibility Checker whenever you want by selecting the status bar button.

Accessibility Checker shown running in the status bar

Note: The Keep accessibility checker running while I work checkbox does not exist in Outlook. Instead, the accessibility checker runs automatically in the background. Instead of an Accessibility button on your status bar, an accessibility MailTip will be shown in the message window, letting you review any accessibility issues before sending a message.  Accessibility issues MailTip in Outlook for Windows

See also

Improve accessibility with the Accessibility Checker

Make your content accessible to everyone with the Accessibility Checker

Rules for the Accessibility Checker

Technical support for customers with disabilities

Microsoft wants to provide the best possible experience for all our customers. If you have a disability or questions related to accessibility, please contact the Microsoft Disability Answer Desk for technical assistance. The Disability Answer Desk support team is trained in using many popular assistive technologies and can offer assistance in English, Spanish, French, and American Sign Language. Please go to the Microsoft Disability Answer Desk site to find out the contact details for your region.

If you are a government, commercial, or enterprise user, please contact the enterprise Disability Answer Desk.

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