Home / Accessibility Tools / PDF Accessibility Software: What Are Your Options?
Danny Trichter
Author
Hina Ilyas
Researcher
#pdfaccessibility #webaccessibility
May 20, 2022
3 minutes

PDF Accessibility Software: What Are Your Options?

Promoting inclusivity and removing barriers for those living with disabilities spans many areas. What many business owners don’t realize is that digital accessibility goes beyond their websites – documents need to be included in this mix too.

PDFs are one of the most common file types shared within and outside of an organization. They can also be the cause of compliance lawsuits.

Fortunately, it’s not difficult to make a PDF accessible, not when you have the right PDF accessibility software. 

PDF Accessibility ExplainedPDF Accessibility Explained

A PDF is deemed accessible when a user with a disability can still understand the content and any media within it with the help of assistive technology and software. 

Examples include screen magnifiers, screen readers, and speech recognition software. 

Adding tags to a PDF is one way to make it accessible as the tags give the document a structure that assistive technology can understand. Adding alternative text to images is another step you would take to make a PDF understandable and accessible. 

The Best PDF Accessibility Software

PDF accessibility software can help you with the process of complying with accessibility laws and providing a more inclusive experience.

Here is the software that comes highly recommended for PDF accessibility:

Acrobat Pro DC

Adobe Acrobat Pro is well known among those who create and access PDFs regularly. When you create a PDF with this software it adds descriptions to form fields, tags content and sets the tab order – just some of what’s required to create an accessible document. 

PAVE

PAVE might not be the most attractive PDF accessibility software but it gets the job done. Simply upload the PDF you want to check and correct, and PAVE will make automatic corrections. You can download the accessible PDF once it’s done. 

PAVE

Foxit

Avoid compliance risks by setting up a live demo of Foxit. This PDF accessibility software is ideal for larger organizations that rely on PDF documents quite heavily. Panasonic, Intel, and Xerox are just a few of their clients.

Foxit

Abledocs

Along with helping you create accessible documents from scratch, Abledocs can also be used to scan any existing PDFs to check for accessibility issues. You can even scan your entire website if there are multiple documents you want to check. 

Abledocs

Axes4

This PDF accessibility tool is quite similar to Abledocs in terms of what it offers. Create, validate, and remediate individual or multiple PDFs to avoid compliance risks. As an added bonus, there is also a team of experts available for training should you need it.

axes4

Equidox

This user-friendly but advanced PDF accessibility software ensures your PDF content is ADA, 508, and WCAG compliant. Scan existing PDF documents or send your documents for remediation. Users can sign up for a free trial to decide whether the solution is right for them.

Equidox

CommonLook PDF

CommonLook offers a free PDF validator plugin, making it easy to check your documents against Section 508, WCAG 2.0 AA, WCAG 2.1 AA, PDF/UA and HHS standards. They also offer a paid professional PDF remediation solution as well as software that creates accessible PDFs from scratch.

CommonLook PDF

Wrapping Up

With so many PDF accessibility software options, there’s no excuse for distributing documents that cannot be accessed by all. The only thing left to decide is whether you need a simple, free tool, or something more comprehensive that includes expert assistance. 

Find out where you stand in the journey of accessibility by conducting an audit of your website at Accessibility Checker

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