This is quite a weird question, as I think I am asking the opposite of what most people want to try and achieve with outline numbering in Microsoft Word.

The outline numbering associated with the styles "Heading 1" and "Heading 2" are fine and working as normal, but the outline numbering associated with all the heading styles from "Heading 3" onwards are broken.

Here is a summary of how they look:


So you can see that while the first two headings are numbering correctly down the document, the third level heading doesn't restart and it doesn't have the correct 1st and 2nd level numbering - they all have '1.1' as a prefix.

These are all controlled by the heading styles and I have tried every combination of options in the outline numbering section of the styles. Short of building a whole new template, recreating all my custom styles and then pasting the text across, I really don't know what to do. Before I try that, does anyone know what is going on here?


Word 2007 has several interesting 'enhancements' to how Outline Numbering works. It is unclear so far on exactly how it is broken for you, but visually it looks like you may be able to right click and "Continue Numbering" on the 1.1.1 number; they may just have 'restarts' applied.

  • Yep - it would seem that a restart would fix the issue, but unfortunately it doesn't work. It's like the numbering set for heading level 1 and 2 is separate and isolated from the remaining levels.
    – GarnerCX
    Nov 1 '10 at 0:40
  • Actually I think this is a bug. I'm finding this very hard to replicate in a another document. I suspect that if you are having this issue, it would be better to create a new document, copy the plain text into it and start marking it up. :(
    – GarnerCX
    Oct 31 '11 at 13:41

This was definitely a bug. I was unable to replicate this issue in any other documents, and the document with this issue would not work no matter what I tried. The only way I could fix it was to copy the plain text into a new Word document and then mark it up.

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