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    #1

    Present tense and past tense in meeting miniutes

    Is it okay to mix past tense with present tense in writing meeting minutes? Are the following examples correct?

    1. Sue said she will talk to Michelle about the business trip. (Is "will" correct? Or the correct way is Sue said she would . . .)

    2. John asked Brian how long it will take to finish the document. Brian said it will take about three days. (Is "will" correct?)

    Thanks in advance for your help.


    Brian

  1. probus's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Present tense and past tense in meeting miniutes

    "Would" is better than "will" in all three cases.

    Since minutes are a record of past events, the main tense in minutes should be the past tense rather than the present, which, by the way, you have not used in your question. In three subordinate clauses you used the simple future, but the simple conditional is correct.

  2. 5jj's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Present tense and past tense in meeting miniutes

    Quote Originally Posted by probus View Post
    In three subordinate clauses you used the simple future, but the simple conditional is correct.
    Minutes written in this way are on the informal side these days, and I thnk the 'will' form is fine, particularly if the minutes are posted very soon after the meeting. The 'would' form (which is not a conditional) is also fine, and the only appropriate one if the minutes are not posted very soon after the meeting.
    Last edited by Rover_KE; 14-Dec-2013 at 23:04. Reason: Fixing typo

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