Accessible pdfs

Primarily publish documents in the website's standard format html. If you still need to publish a pdf, make sure to make it accessible. The legal requirements for pdfs apply from 23 September 2020.

The law on accessibility to digital public service, is a law aimed at increasing digital accessibility for all users, including people with disabilities. This means pdfs must be accessible if they are going to be published on

Choice of format when publishing

Carefully consider the choice of format when publishing something on the website.

  • Primarily publish documents in the website's standard format html, that is, make a web page. If you post information in, for example, pdf or word format, it will be much more difficult to search and access for users who use a mobile phone or lack the necessary software.
  • If you have documents in other formats than html, summarize them in html, so that users can rate the content without downloading it. In Drupal, this should be done in the field "search snippet" when you upload your document.
  • When uploading it, enter the full title of the document as the name / title.
  • Documents created for print must be reworked to fit the web, not uploaded in the print-friendly format.
  • Design documents so that they can be easily read on screen. Then you contribute to fewer users printing on paper.
  • If you use pdfs, make sure they are created so that they are accessible.
  • Type of documents that is best suited in pdf format:
    • long documents which are primarily intended to be read in printed format
    • documents static over time, such as legal texts, regulatory letters, and instructions
    • documents depending on the fact that layout, graphics, and content are always presented in the same way
    • documents bound by law to look specific
    • documents illustrated with multi-column tables or containing mathematical formulas or other elements that require special document formats such as annual reports.

Create accessible pdfs

Learn how to make your material accessible yourself or contact an external supplier for assistance.

When creating an accessible pdf, you should do as much as possible in the original document, for example in Microsoft Word or Adobe InDesign. You also need to supplement with settings in Acrobat Professional.

Think through the accessibility aspects

  • Check that the text is really text, and not scanned as an image
  • Review colors / contrast in, for example, diagrams and text against background / plate (suggested via WCAG - Contrast Checker).
  • Please use a plain, good text content (simple language and written for the reader)
  • Label the content correctly using style sheets / tag structure
  • Enter alt texts for pictures (explanatory texts what the pictures represent)
  • Define the reading order (the order in which the text in the document is to be read out)
  • Enter document title and author
  • Export with the correct settings when you convert the document to a pdf (create an interactive pdf with the options "Create pdf with tag" and "Use structure for tab order" selected)
  • Make sure links work
  • Check the accessibility of your document, both before and after exports

Get help adapting your pdf to accessibility

KI has an agreement with Arkitektkopia for print services and graphic design. Arkitektkopia can help you with accessibility customization of the material they create. They can also help you with existing pdfs, although it can be both time consuming and costly.


More detailed information

Create and verify PDF accessibility: Adobe Acrobat Pro

Why content should be published in HTML and not PDF: The English Government

Content reviewer: