keep lines togetherAlways use with headings

Keep lines to­gether en­sures that all lines in a para­graph ap­pear on the same page. If the last line of the para­graph won’t fit on the cur­rent page, the whole para­graph will be moved to the next page.

Use this op­tion with head­ings to pre­vent them from start­ing at the bot­tom of one page and con­tin­u­ing at the top of the next. That looks bad.

Like widow and or­phan con­trol, keep­ing lines to­gether will cre­ate gaps at the bot­tom of pages. But un­like widow and or­phan con­trol, you only want to keep lines to­gether in spe­cial sit­u­a­tions, not as part of your de­fault text formatting.

Why? Keep­ing lines to­gether is a blunter tech­nique. It only works on whole para­graphs, so the longer the para­graph, the big­ger the gap.

If you need to make groups of el­e­ments stick to­gether, the keep-lines-to­gether op­tion works well with hard line breaks. Re­call that hard line breaks don’t cre­ate a new para­graph, but rather a set of lines. Keep­ing lines to­gether will en­sure this set of lines ap­pears on a sin­gle page.

For in­stance, it’s help­ful to keep lines to­gether in sig­na­ture blocks:

May 19, 2024       Boxer Bedley & Ball

Violet Manganese
Auditor for MegaCorp

Here, I’ve put a hard line break at the end of each line. Then I’ve set the whole sig­na­ture block—which is a sin­gle para­graph—to keep lines to­gether. That way, I don’t have to worry that half the block will end up on one page and half on the next. All of it trav­els together.

An­other ex­am­ple: I once had to pre­pare a jury-in­struc­tion form that re­quired an in­dex of in­struc­tions where the judge could en­ter his rulings:

CACI 204. Willful suppression of evidence
_____ Given as proposed
_____ Given as modified
_____ Refused
_____ Withdrawn

The prob­lem was that the four choices kept get­ting split up by page breaks. The so­lu­tion was to put hard line breaks af­ter each choice and keep the lines to­gether to make sure the choices moved as a unit.

How to keep lines together

WordRight-click in the text and se­lect ParagraphLine and Page Breaks → check Keep lines together

Word­Per­fectFormatKeep Text Together → check Keep selected text together on same page

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