Control When Your Dialogs Appear

When HotDocs creates an interview for the user, it reads through the template and displays dialogs based on the order it encounters variables and instructions in the template. However, if you want your dialogs to appear in a different order—for instance, if you want a certain dialog to appear first, even though variables that prompt the dialog to be asked appear at the end of the template—you can use an ASK instruction to force HotDocs to display the dialog.

To insert an ASK instruction

  1. Position the cursor at the point in the template where you want the dialog to appear (for example, at the top of the template).
  2. Click the ASK Field button. The ASK Field dialog box appears.
  3. Select a dialog from the Dialog drop-down list, or click the Edit Component button to create a new dialog. (See Gather Questions into a Custom Dialog.)
  4. Click OK. The ASK instruction is inserted in the template.

You can place several ASK instructions in a single computation script to control the order all dialogs are asked in the interview. See Put ASK Instructions in a Computation Variable and Define a Custom Interview.

Sometimes you want to restrict a dialog so it only appears in the interview when it is specifically asked (using an ASK instruction). To do this, clear Link variables to this dialog (at the Options tab). If a dialog that has this option cleared is not specifically asked, variables in the dialog will be asked individually.

In Microsoft Word, you can also insert ASK instructions either by clicking on the HotDocs drop-down menu in the HotDocs toolbar and choosing ASK Field, or by right-clicking in the template and choosing ASK Field from the shortcut menu.

Ask automatically has replaced the need for using ASK NONE / ASK ALL instructions. However, they will still be available for this release.