Fillable PDF - Everything you need to know about JotForm Fillable PDF Creator

Last Update: March 17, 2016

Are you looking to create amazing and fantastic forms? Well, you’re in the right place with JotForm.

With the latest change you can do even more. JotForm is now not only the best online form creator, but it now allows you to create fillable PDFs as well.

We have always allowed the creation of plain PDF files, which can be reviewed online and printed to paper. What you couldn’t do with them was fill them in online. Why settle for a plain document if you can have much more?

And so JotForm delivered: The Fillable PDF Form Creator.

The help doc shows you what you how to use this latest addition to JotForm’s feature set.

This is the sample jotform we will use during these tests: http://form.jotformpro.com/form/50754214652957

To create the PDF all we did was navigate to the Fillable PDF Form Creator Page, press the Create button, and select the form.

Here’s the Fillable PDF that was created: fillable PDF form.



The Form includes many of the basic field elements, listed below.



- Form Tools -

1. Header
2. Text field
3. TextBox
4. Text Area
5. DropDown
6. radio button
7. Check box
8. Image
9. File Upload
10. Submit button

The File Upload (9) field is hidden at this time on the PDF files since you can’t transfer file attachments to our servers via a PDF.

The Header(1), Text field (2) and Image (8) will show properly on your jotform but will also show a background of your form behind them. Improvements will continue to be made on how the layout is displayed.

Listed below are all the Quick Tool fields.



- Quick Tools -
1. Full name
2. Email
3. Address
4. Phone Number
5. Current Date
6. Time
7. Number
8. Captcha

The Captcha (8) field is not displayed since it wouldn’t work on a PDF and serves no purpose there.

The Current Date (5) field no longer has a pop up, but works nicely when you to enter the date using your keyboard in the input field (like a text box).

The Time (6) field is still being updated, but will also work like a standard text box in a future release.



- Survey Tools -

1. Star Rating
2. Scale Rating
3. Spinner
4. Matrix
5. Form Collapse
6. Page Break

Form Collapse (5) and Page Break (6) fields are not shown on your PDF jotforms and the Star Rating (1), Scale Rating (2) and Spinner (3) will fall back to the plain input (text box) so you are still able to have the rating entered. The Matrix (4) field works as expected.

Some tips and answers to the questions that you might have

Q: My form is not fillable, it is static - it’s just a picture.

A: Please use Adobe Acrobat Reader or Foxit.


Q: Will my payment tools be shown in the Fillable PDF?

A: Not at this time.


Q: Will my amazing widgets be shown in the Fillable PDF?

A: Our widgets require extra scripting and are loaded from external resources so at this time they are not available.


Q: I got this error: "An error occurred during the submit process. Cannot process content of type text/html"

A: This issue has been resolved. It was caused by the thank you page being something other than our default thank you page. Please recreate the file once again.


Q: Do conditions work in fillable PDFs?

A: No, they do not work at this time and as such fields that your web form has conditions on will just be shown as fields, not conditions would be assigned to them.


Q: What happens to fields that are hidden by conditions?

A: These fields still exist on your web form, but they are hidden in your PDF.


Q: What happens with required fields on my jotform once the jotform is exported as fillable PDF?

A:  You will have the * (star) next to your field shown, but it will not behave the same as on the web form.
     - See it as a paper, it will not be able to jump or get different coloring, it will require people filling them out to not skip them - as on paper.


Q: Can I open my fillable PDF in a browser to fill it out and submit?

A: If the form is going to be opened in a browser we would always suggest using webform since everything will work in its fullest and all design, conditions and widgets will be available to make your form stand out from plain and people submitting it will enjoy. On the other hand, the fillable PDF will be shown in your browser, but you will not be able to fill it out. This is due to the fact that browsers are using the smallest amount of code possible to quickly load and show PDF and do not have all the features Adobe Reader, Adobe Acrobat or Foxit have.


Q: Will Page Break or some other field/tool create a page break in PDF for us?

A: No, not at this time. Each PDF that you create will be a single page that will not be impacted by the Page break or Form Collapse.


Q: Can we export all of our forms to fillable PDF?

A: Yes, that should be the case, but please note that if your jotform is very long (longer than this guide), with a lot of images, text and similar, the output of it might not be what you are expecting. What we would suggest instead is to create a smaller set of forms that you are going to export - which will work great if you are going to print them and you can send several files to be filled out if you must use the fillable PDF for the submissions.


Q: Can we add Adobe eSign widget to our fillable PDF to capture signature as described here?

A: No, this would not be possible at this time. If you take a closer look at the guide on our blog above it explains that this is to be added to a webform and this is currently the only way to use it. If at some point if becomes possible to use it in a fillable PDF as well, we will update this guide as well.

As above, we would recommend sharing a link to your jotform instead which can be opened on any device with internet connection while fillable PDFs can not be opened and submitted with ease on the same.


If you encounter any issues, do let us know about it. Please let us know your feedback in the comments!


16 Comments...


   
kazix (March 30, 2015 at 04:27 PM)

When converting to PDF, the first on the list in the drop down boxes appears to have a 0 in or is blank. How do I remove this?

View Answer


   
leae (May 01, 2015 at 03:03 AM)

I've created a PDF form and it looks great, but when I click submit I do not see where the form is "submitted" to.

I don't receive it by email, or in the submissions field. I am viewing the form on Adobe.

What am I missing?

View Answer


   
swifpygal (June 02, 2015 at 03:46 AM)

Hi,

The submit button is not on the PDF created from the form

Please help

View Answer


   
dragonflyforever (June 04, 2015 at 03:14 PM)

Can I import my PDF fills to Jotforms? I have a number of PDF's already created and don't want to have to recreate them in Jotform if there is a way to import them.

View Answer


   
JosephineStewart (June 29, 2015 at 11:23 PM)

Hi
The Fillable PDF version that's generated looks terrible as the headings throughout the form are coming across as they are shown on the website but the rest is adjusted. Some headings overlap the question underneath/below it. What can I do to prevent this from happening?
Thank you

View Answer


   
ereproperty (June 30, 2015 at 11:31 AM)

I'm having the same problem as JosephineStewart.

The blocks of text on my form have half of the information cut off and there are random sections of text that appear where they shouldn't be on the form.

Any assistance with this problem would be greatly appreciated.

View Answer


   
elga.usa (August 03, 2015 at 01:42 PM)

I am getting an error when trying to Pdf my form eithe rin IE or chrome


AccessDenied
Access Denied
E06D6D97358A947B

J8ROfm6rKDkk6xGhhBjb5Qyw5v8hgBiDMahnkmL3h71DKrL+8XtHKqKwwVlZ0RQO8y5Gyai3aYg=

View Answer


   
Lucigen (September 15, 2015 at 09:07 AM)

Can the content be dumped into excel automatically once the source has online access? E.g. is it like the online forms?

Thank you.

View Answer


   
fortmckayalcor (October 21, 2015 at 01:26 PM)

My logo and text that was entered as Text in my online form comes through as very pixilated in the pdf fill-able version. They are both clear on the pdf submissions. Is there a suggestion to clean this up?

View Answer


   
ePosterBoards (January 28, 2016 at 04:00 PM)

I am also getting an error below when trying to convert my Event checklist form to PDF. Please help?

Error>
AccessDenied
Access Denied
8F59F3D83AEBCE20

ayrToEzyp7xpewy4GH5jRwVyN+LRcoSOKHd/yEaBiWC2ss2nSWDqe9tymMAZzq/XVRhZ6OT/Dwo=

View Answer


   
mrperezmail (February 26, 2016 at 01:13 PM)

Hi - I noticed that the forms tools items fail to work on the PDF file when the file version is created.
For instance, the drop-down items do not display the list set up on the web-site.

Please advise/help.

View Answer


   
Richard.Struzik (March 08, 2016 at 01:07 PM)

People who open my form with Nuance-Power PDF cannot submit the form. Is Nuance not compatible with Jotform's Fillable PDF?

View Answer


   
davisjaron (April 16, 2016 at 07:14 PM)

I have tried two different computers, with two different operating systems, and 4 different browsers. Whenever I tried to turn my web forms into PDF, it just says "working" and stays on that status. It never creates the PDF. What is going wrong?

View Answer


   
WNCVPMembership (May 06, 2016 at 10:52 PM)

I get an error of "one or more fields are required" when I SUBMIT the PDF fillable form, even though all required fields are filled. This happens in Chrome and in IE.

Also, in Edge, I can't enter anything in any of the fields.

Here is my form: https://www.jotform.com//?formID=61148649819165

View Answer


   
tjacobson (May 11, 2016 at 12:36 PM)

Hello, I am trying to have an active PDF form embedded in my jotform. I've used html code to display the pdf in the jotform; however, when the user submits the form, the PDF responses are not saved and the PDF is blank. Is there a way that I can upload an active PDF that will save the user's responses upon submission?

View Answer


   
biz2banker (July 28, 2016 at 10:41 AM)

Perfect, just what I was hoping for!


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