Untagged Element

Rule ID: untagged-element
Ruleset: axe-pdf 2.0
User Impact: Critical
Guidelines: WCAG 2.1 (A), WCAG 2.0 (A)

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Compliance Data & Impact

User Impact


Disabilities Affected

  • Blind
  • Deafblind
  • Mobility


  • WCAG 2.1 (A)
  • WCAG 2.0 (A)

WCAG Success Criteria [WCAG 2.1 (A)]

  • 1.3.1: MUST: Info and Relationships

WCAG Success Criteria [WCAG 2.0 (A)]

  • 1.3.1: MUST: Info and Relationships

How to Fix the Problem

How to tag a PDF document

The most efficient way to properly tag content in a PDF document is to format the document for accessibility in the authoring tool itself. Proper structure and semantics should be utilized before the document is converted (Saved as PDF) to a PDF file.

In Acrobat Adobe Pro:

  1. Open the Tags panel
  2. Click the options menu (or right-click the "No Tags Available" text) and select "Add Tags to Document."
  3. Acrobat will automatically generate tags for the document.
  4. Please review the tags in the Tags panel and make corrections if necessary.

Note: Adobe Acrobat Pro is the most common tool for PDF remediations, but other tools and software are also available and can be used to remediate the PDF.

Why it Matters

In order for screen readers to understand the structure of a document and interpret information in a document, the PDF document needs to be tagged. Tags are invisible labels that provide significant information about the content in a PDF document. Tags can be used to identify paragraph text and headings, assign text alternatives to images, associate table cells with their corresponding header cells, and associate form fields with their corresponding labels.

Rule Description

PDF documents must be tagged for accessibility

The Algorithm (in simple terms)

PDF documents must be tagged for accessibility and must not have any content that is either untagged or artifacted.


Refer to the complete list of axe 2.0 rules.

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