By Alicia Mitchell-Mercer

It came to my attention recently that some of my fellow paralegals are still using the original Bates stamper.

I was told that some firms do not want to invest in the software which makes this whole Bates thing easier. If you have Adobe Professional at work, there’s already a built-in solution. If you are new to Adobe, click on “tools” on the right side of the screen and select “Bates Numbering” under “Edit Page Design.”

But, if your firm has limited means to purchase new software, here is a great option:

If you need to Bates number/stamp documents but do not have the software like Adobe Professional, you can download it from

It is free to download and it lets you put in prefixes and suffixes for your bates numbers, as well as offsetting numbers making it easy to start at page 1,532 or whatever when more discovery documents are added. There is no malware or ads or anything like that. It’s a safe program.

Also, a little-known fact is if you have a Brother printer at work, you can download a free driver and software from Nuance PDF Reader (albeit from the Brother website). It allows you to drag multiple documents into that platform and stack them in whatever order you like. There are many other great features. It’s awesome for discovery and organizing exhibits.

Oh, my! Why?