ACCESSIBLE FORMS: Phone Number Fields and Text Labels

Black Labrador Retriever Looking Up at Telephone Receiver

Many people with visual or cognitive disabilities can recognize phone number fields in HTML forms and usually understand what info needs to be provided to fill in the fields.

Phone numbers are frequently formatted in fixed, distinctive ways, and Web developers may feel that just providing visual formatting of the fields will be sufficient to identify them.

Not so fast

Even if all the fields have programmatically determined names, a text label must also identify the set of fields as a phone number. The label alerts screen reader users about the content necessary to complete the form field correctly.

Best Practice in HTML5

In its most basic form, a telephone form input and text label can be implemented like this:

<label for=”telNo”>Phone number:</label>
<input id=”telNo” name=”telNo” type=”tel”>


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