Law and requirements
The Plain Writing Act of 2010 was signed on October 13, 2010. The law requires that federal agencies use clear government communication that the public can understand and use.
Executive departments and agencies must:
Follow the Federal Plain Language Guidelines.
By July 13, 2011, agencies must:
- designate a senior official for “plain writing”
- explain the Act’s requirements to staff
- establish a procedure to oversee the implementation of the Act within the agency
- train agency staff in plain writing
- designate staff as points of contact for the agency plain writing web page
- publish a compliance report (DOC) for meeting the requirements of the Act on its plain language web page
By October 13, 2011, agencies must:
- Use plain language in any document that:
- is necessary for obtaining any federal government benefit or service or filing taxes
- provides information about an federal government benefit or service, or
- explains to the public how to comply with a requirement that the federal government administers or enforces
- Write annual compliance reports and post these reports on its plain language web page.