Federal Register

Document Drafting Handbook FAQs

Federal agencies should use this Document Drafting Handbook (DDH) as a guide to prepare documents for publication in the Federal Register.


What is this book for? Do I need it?

The Document Drafting Handbook:

  • explains how to create and submit documents that comply with OFR's requirements
  • provides numerous examples illustrating common situations
  • suggests solutions to drafting problems

What is the latest edition?

With the exception of Chapter 6, the October 1998 Revision (including Supplements 2-5) is the current edition of the Federal Register Document Drafting Handbook (DDH).

The IBR Handbook replaces DDH Chapter 6 as of July 2015.


Can I use an older edition of the Document Drafting Handbook (DDH)?

With the exception of Chapter 6, yes. There is nothing in the October 1998 DDH that contradicts or changes the material in the April 1997 Revision. However, we added some new topics, and rewrote many sections and added more examples to clarify and expand our coverage.

  • Appendix D describes in detail how the October 1998 edition differs from the April 1997 Revision.

The IBR Handbook replaces DDH Chapter 6 as of July 2015.

replaces DDH Chapter 6. It now highlights issues agencies should consider when thinking about incorporation by reference and rulemaking and it contains the new requirements from the January 2015 amendments to 1 CFR part 51. You may not use DDH Chapter 6.


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I have a Comment

Many of the improvements in the October 1998 Document Drafting Handbook are based on comments or suggestions from readers of previous editions.

  • If you think we left something out, or should have done something differently, please tell us:

    • Send e-mail to fedreg.legal@nara.gov

    • or write to:
      Federal Register (F)
      National Archives and Records Administration
      8601 Adelphi Road
      College Park, MD   20740-6001

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