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Thread: Possessives

  1. #1
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    Default Possessives

    I work for a marketing agency and a client offers insurance services to the all of the UK's armed forces.

    Their main strapline reads:
    The Forces Insurance service

    As a possessive, I beleive it should read:
    The Forces' Insurance service

    Could you please confirm this for me before I print off loads of leaflets with bad grammar?

    Thanks, Nita.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Possessives

    No apostrophe -s.

    Ex: The Forces Insurance Service (i.e., insurance for the Forces)

    You need to check with your client!

    All the best.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Possessives

    Thanks for your reply.
    I am actually checking this for my client - as they don't know themselves...
    We still have confusion here - are you sure it doesn't need the apostrophe after the "s" ? - it is a possessive - ie the insurance belongs to the forces...

    The word forces is a plural - it encompassess three force groups.

    Would it be required in the sentence below:

    The forces' insurance services are very complicated.

    Thanks, Nita B.

  4. #4
    Anglika is offline No Longer With Us
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    Default Re: Possessives

    As this is insurance services for the forces, "forces" is not possessive, so no apostrophe is required.

    If the insurance services were provided by the forces, you would require an apostrophe

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Possessives

    Thanks - that does make it clearer. We were reading it in the context of a possessive hence the confusion.

    Any chance you could clarify one more possessive?

    In the statement: over 35 years' experience in the vending machine industry.
    Do we require the apostrophe?

    Look forward to hearing from you,
    Nita B.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Possessives

    Here's the short answer. It varies. Some say use the apostrophe, some say it's outdated. When in doubt, use what's known: over 35 years' experience. You can't go wrong.

    All the best.

    From Possessive Forms

    For expressions of time and measurement, the possessive is shown with an apostrophe -s: "one dollar's worth," "two dollars' worth," "a hard day's night," "two years' experience," "an evening's entertainment," and "two weeks' notice" (the title of the Hollywood movie nothwithstanding).

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Possessives

    Thanks! I'm an old fashioned king of gal so I'll go with the traditional way and use the apostrophe!
    Appreciate the help - you are all stars!
    Kindest, Nita B.

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