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ADOBE ACROBAT X - PDF/A

BASICS
original document is not in its native application, see Quick Reference Card
Adobe Acrobat X PDF/A Creating and Converting.

WHAT IS PDF/A?

1. From the Word 2010 (or other application) ribbon, select File > Print.
2. In the backstage views Print screen, click the Printer dropdown arrow
and choose Adobe PDF.
3. Click the Printer Properties link directly below the printer name.
4. Select the Adobe PDF Settings tab.
5. Click Default Settings: dropdown arrow then choose: PDF/A-1b:2005
(RGB).

PDF/A stands for Portable Document Format / Archive.

Saving a document as a PDF/A preserves the information and


ensures that the format and contents of the document remain in tact in
the future. In order for a document to be saved as a PDF/A, it must
meet a stricter set of standards than a typical PDF document. These
standards are broken into two types:
PDF/A 1a this format is stricter than PDF/A 1b
PDF/A 1b this format is less strict than PDF/A 1a
PDF/A requires that graphics and fonts be embedded into the file and
does not allow audio, video, or executable links and attachments.
Regular PDFs do not have such restrictions.

WHY ARE WE USING THIS NEW PDF/A FORMAT?

PDF/A format is a standard for archiving and presenting digital


documents.
Courts in multiple jurisdictions post documents in PDF/A format.
Courts in multiple states require electronic case filings (ECF) to be in
the PDF/A format.

BEFORE YOU CREATE A PDF/A

Ensure the document is the final


version prior to saving it into the
PDF/A format. Once the document
is saved as a PDF/A, it is an
archived file and should in no way
be modified! (If you, or anyone
else, modify the file, it will no longer
be compliant).
Determine if the court requires the
PDF/A 1b format (most common)
or PDF/A 1a format (uncommon).
Also determine if the court requires
searchable text. Different jurisdictions have different regulations and
selecting the right format will help ensure compliance when you upload
the document to the court.

6. Deselect the check box to the left of Rely on system fonts only: do
not use document fonts.
7. Click OK and click Print button.
Two new items appear in PDF/A that didnt appear with standard PDF:
An identification bar stating The file you have opened
complies with the PDF/A standard and has been opened readonly to prevent modification
A PDF Standards icon on the navigation pane displaying
Conformance and Output Intent information
8. Save PDF/A document.

PRINTING DOCUMENTS TO PDF/A 1B FORMAT


These are the basic steps necessary for saving a document from the native
program directly to PDF/A-1b only. If other formats are needed, or if the
Reed Smith LLP

Published June 23, 2012


US_ADMIN-78538712.4-DMSYSTEM

ADOBE ACROBAT X - PDF/A

BASICS

Whats the difference between Creating a PDF/A file and Conforming to PDF/A?
Creating a PDF/A File - Converting directly from an electronic
Conforming to PDF/A - Converting an existing PDF document so it
source like Word or Excel to PDF/A
meets all the requirements of PDF/A

NAMING PDF/A DOCUMENTS

UPLOADING A NON-COMPLIANT FILE

Looking at the file extension of a PDF/A 1b document will not help you
determine if a document is in PDF/A format as it will have .PDF as the
extension. PDF/A is not a valid file extension. For this reason, it is
recommended that you include PDFA or PDF-A in the file name (do not use
the slash in file names).

This example demonstrates Western District of PA cm/ECF website. Other


districts may have similar ECF websites.

Example: If existing PDF is saved as


Brief Sun v Moon 123456 Antonio.pdf create the newly saved PDF/A as
Brief Sun v Moon 123456 Antonio PDFA.pdf
to keep track of the same source documents.

Due to the error, this court returned an error statement and did not accept the
filing.

In this Civil filing, a main document was attached, it was not compliant.
A secondary file was also attached, it was compliant.

When attempting to proceed through the process on the website, the following
message appears:

METADATA ASSISTANT DOESNT CONVERT TO PDF/A


At this time the Metadata Assistant tool cannot convert a document into the
PDF/A format.

CHECKING A PDF/A FILE FOR COMPLIANCE


Adobe Acrobat Professional is needed to check for compliance.
Note: the Standard Adobe Acrobat application that is on your Reed
Smith computer is not capable of checking for compliance
Adobe Professional is available at a kiosk computer in each office.
Check with local IT Support or Business Manager for location
For full details, see Quick Reference Card Adobe Acrobat X PDF/A
Creating and Converting.

WHY WOULD THE FILE BE UNABLE TO CONFORM TO


PDF/A?

SEARCHABLE TEXT IN PDF/A

The Save As procedure shown may not be able to conform a file to PDF/A in
which case you will see a message similar to this:

If a PDF/A file is created from a digital text document (i.e. MS Word


document); the text will automatically be recognized (searchable).

There are several issues which could prevent conforming a file to PDF/A-1B:

Normally you dont have to worry about a PDF/A file being text searchable,
unless the file was created from a scanned paper document or image. If this is
the case, see instructions on how to make a PDF/A file that has searchable
text on QRC Adobe Acrobat X - PDF/A Creating and Converting

The document requires fonts that you do not have on your system
The document uses fonts which have a "Do Not Embed" flag
The document has transparent objects
The document is damaged

Reed Smith LLP

Published June 23, 2012


US_ADMIN-78538712.4-DMSYSTEM