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Repeated Region Overview

Creating a repeated region around variables, text and other content allows the user to add more information about the same question in the interview. Repeated regions work well for adding multiple dependents to an insurance document, adding multiple jobs to an employment document, and other similar situations.

Repeated Regions and Lists Defined

You can include lists of answers in your final documents by placing a REPEAT/END REPEAT instruction around variables in a template. Repeating variables lets the user supply as many answers to the same variable as necessary. Instead of collecting and placing a single answer, as variables normally do, the repeated variable can place a list of answers into the assembled document. You can create a repeated region inside a table in Word. When Author places the interview answers into the final document, the table contains a list of the repeated answers.

Repeating Table Rows and Selected Text

When you create a repeated region inside a word processing table, you can repeat content within a single cell or you can repeat an entire row.

For a repeated table row to work, your table must meet these requirements:

  • Each row has the same number of columns.
  • The REPEAT instruction is in the first cell of the repeated row.

You can use multiple repeated regions of both types within the same table. You can nest repeated regions in a table, provided you also correctly nest the corresponding dialogs and contain any non-row repeat instructions within a single cell.

HotDocs allows these different combinations of repeated regions in a table.

  • A regular REPEAT completely contained within a single table cell.
  • A row REPEAT that is the first field in the table row.
  • A row REPEAT repeating a row that contains a regular REPEAT in a single cell.

You can nest repeated regions

  1. within a repeated row,
  2. within other single repeated regions or
  3. within a nested computation variable.

A repeated region can also span an entire table where the REPEAT field is before the table, and the END REPEAT field follows the table—both fields outside of any table.

Create and Edit a Repeated Region

You can create a list of repeated answers by inserting a REPEAT instruction around one or more variables. For example, perhaps you want to insert a list of personal property items with their associated values. You can create a variable for each of the two data types (items and values), and then repeat them.

When you create the REPEAT instruction, you are asked to create or select a custom dialog to control the instruction. During the interview, the user can answer the dialog over and over again, until they have listed all their pertinent property items.

You also have the option to limit the number of answers a user can supply for a repeated variable. HotDocs places these answers into the finished document.

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Additionally, you can use the REPEAT instruction to repeat any text, instructions, or other parts of a template. Everything inside a REPEAT instruction becomes repeatable together with the variables.

Repeat Return Options

This should likely be its own topic, since it looks like we'll need to reference it in more than the context of repeated regions. Scripting in general and every topic related to that will need to reference this.

By default, when HotDocs inserts a REPEAT instruction in the template, it includes a return character (similar to a paragraph mark in a word processor) after the instruction. During assembly, as the instruction is processed and removed from the assembled document, this return character is likewise removed. Depending on several factors, you may prefer to keep HotDocs from adding this character, or you may want to add a return character only under certain situations. You can specify an option that controls this. See also, Understand How Smart Returns are Inserted After Instructions.