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Most legal documents like this are just black and white, with some bold and italic thrown in there, as well as indentation and changes in font size. But you don't really see color in there. The same with legal forms like this driver's license form. It's just black and white.

I'm wondering what would be a good use of color (and why you would use it) in some legal document like the ones above. Wondering what would justify adding color.

  • It just "seems nice". Kind of vague, you can make plain b+w documents look nice too.
  • It enhances something. This is kind of vague though, not sure what this would mean.
  • Branding. But I don't see how you'd decide what elements would need branding, other than say a single logo in the whole document (so there would only be one tiny piece of color in the document).
  • Figures. But you could just do figures in b+w too.
  • Etc.
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The Spanish Ministry of Finance uses monochrome colored forms + black ink to help the user distinguish them:

enter image description here

Or colors to differentiate areas to be filled by the user:

enter image description here

Some examples at Google image search: Modelo 036, Modelo 100, Modelo 130

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Branding can definitely be a reason if templates have already been designed or instructed for, then color needs to be used.

Another reason is highlighting, in some very complex forms like @Danielillo attached, it helps to break the content into boxes of different color.

Be aware:

  • color printing can be more expensive than b&w, and this matters for large print runs
  • when printed on b&w hardware, color becomes gray which may be a problem as you'll be losing contrast

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