FAQs

Do I have to register to use Robert B. Davis Proofreading Services?
No. Currently no registration is required. In the future we aim to enable customers to register, which should make submission of documents easier than it already is.

Am I required to do anything before submitting a document?
Yes. Please read our terms and conditions because you will have to agree that you have read, understood and accepted them in order to submit a document using our online submission form. Our terms and conditions cover issues such as confidentiality, payment and liability. They also apply currently while the online submission form is yet to be activated.

Are you an accredited proofreading service?
Robert B. Davis holds a proofreading certificate from the Society of Editors and Proofreaders (UK).

What is the difference between proofreading and editing?
Proofreading concerns the correction of spelling, grammar and punctuation in documents. It involves checking for consistency of terminology and of spelling where options exist. It involves querying of ambiguous wording, and following any requested style guide. If the text makes sense then no further intervention is required. Editing involves all aspects of proofreading and in addition requires greater intervention that may include rewording of text and reordering of paragraphs. Robert B. Davis Proofreading Services is not an editorial service.

How can I contact you?
You can contact us via telephone or email. See details at the bottom of the page.

What changes will be made to my document?
Spelling, grammar and punctuation mistakes will be corrected. Ambiguous text will be queried and alternative meanings indicated, if possible. If a style guide is provided then this will be followed (e.g. for certain formatting or for the usage of certain spellings).

How do I submit a document for proofreading to you?
Please submit your document using our online submission form. You will be invoiced once we have received the document.

How do I know that my work has been successfully sent?
Once your document has been submitted you will receive a confirmation email. Once we have assessed the submitted document you will be sent a second email with an invoice attachment.

If my work to be proofread is in separate files, what should I do to submit?
You can submit them separately. As far as we are concerned they will just be considered as separate jobs.

Can I send my document by post?
We prefer electronic submission but if this is not possible then please contact us via email or phone to discuss a postal submission. Contact details can be found at the bottom of every page on the website.

What is meant by 'style guide' on the submission form?
Often you will want your work done in a particular way. For example, certain fonts may be required, bold or italics may be required, '-ise' spellings or '-ize' spellings may be preferred. The proofreader will follow any such instructions. Anything not mentioned in a style guide will be left to the discretion of the proofreader.

Do you proofread in British or American English?
By default, proofreading will be in British English. If American English is required this can be indicated in the style guide as part of the submission process. If this is not indicated, but American spellings seem to be preferred by the author of the text, efforts will be made to maintain this style. If we are unsure, spellings will be queried.

How much does it cost to get my work proofread?
The cost depends on two things - the word count and the requested turnaround time. The standard rate is €0.01/word for a turnaround time of 11–20 business days. Slower and cheaper, or quicker and more expensive options exist. You can see these by getting an instant quote on the home page or on the submission form.

Is there a minimum fee for a proofreading job?
Yes. The minimum fee is €12.00 including VAT (€10.00 without VAT).

How do I pay for the proofreading service?
After submitting a document you will be invoiced via email. Payment is to be made by bank transfer using the bank details supplied.

How is the word count decided?
The word count is done by us. Therefore please only submit anything that needs proofreading. All words in the document will be considered in the word count.

Will the quote from the 'instant quote' box, be my final price?
No. The "instant quote" gives you a rough idea of the cost of work minus VAT. The final price including VAT is calculated after submission of your document and will be emailed as an invoice.

Do I need to pay VAT?
If you are in Estonia, whether VAT-registered or not, VAT (20%) must be paid. If you are in another EU country and not part of a VAT-registered organisation then VAT (20%) must be paid. If you are outside of the EU or VAT-registered then this will not be paid.

When will proofreading work start?
We require the payment to be made before work can begin. As soon as you have received the invoice, it is recommended that you pay. Payment will be confirmed via email and this is the moment from which the turnaround time is calculated. Prompt payment is especially important regarding express turnaround times.

How fast can my document be proofread?
We offer four different turnaround times at different prices. Calculated from the point payment is received, the slowest turnaround time is 21–30 business days. The fastest turnaround time is 1–5 business days. There are word limits on certain turnaround times.

If I choose a slow turnaround time (up to 30 business days), will it definitely take the full 6 weeks before I receive the document?
No, not definitely, but you should expect this to be the latest you will receive the document, unless you are otherwise informed.

From when is the turnaround time calculated?
The turnaround time is calculated from receipt of payment. You will receive receipt of payment via email with an expected completion date for proofreading work.

What size of document is accepted?
This depends on the word count. With the slowest option (21–30 business days) documents up to 30,000 words can be submitted. With the express option (1–5 business days) the word limit is 5,000.

What type of file can be submitted?
Various file formats are accepted: .doc, .docx, .odp, .odt, .ods, .pdf, .ppt, .xls. If you are using another file format and are unsure, please contact us to find out what is possible.

Can I be sure there'll be no compatibility issues between my computer operating system and the one you use?
We use Windows and Mac operating systems and we ask that you indicate which system your document was made on, so we can reduce the likelihood of a compatibility issue. If a received document looks to be affected by a compatibility issue we will inform you.

Will my document be treated confidentially?
Yes. We use a secure submission system and nothing sent to us will be passed on to anybody else.

Can you guarantee success if my work is proofread?
The success of your work, for example, your proofread manuscript being accepted by a journal, or your proofread CV ensuring that you land your dream job, cannot be guaranteed simply by proofreading. However, avoiding any linguistic mistakes in your document will be an advantage.

If I am unsure of some comments or changes I have received back from you, then what should I do?
It is advised to contact us via email in the case of a few queries relating to a returned document. This will be free of charge for up to 10 sentences as long as you state the reference number of your previously submitted document. If you want the document or parts of the document proofreading for a second time then this will have to be submitted as a new job and a new invoice will be sent. We advise that if you do this, then you submit only sentences or paragraphs that need to be rechecked so that only these are paid for.

Can I apply for a refund?
Refunds are not accepted for work returned on time. We will contact you in the rare circumstances that work already paid for has proven to require more time and effort than anticipated. From this point a new deadline may be renegotiated with a partial refund based on the extra time needed. In these rare cases, a full refund can be provided if you no longer wish us to finish the job. We keep copies of all proofread work securely so it is possible to discuss problems in relation to particular documents.

Will all submitted documents be accepted for proofreading?
We endeavour to provide a service for all, but we are not obliged to accept all documents for proofreading. For example we may simply be too busy to take on a new job. Also, if the language is of such a standard that it is too hard to understand and the proofreader cannot do their job, then the work will be rejected. In this case the author should consider editorial services or even translation services. Documents can be quickly assessed for such a problem.

Will deadlines be met during busy periods?
At times where we are inundated with work, and we simply do not have time to consider a submitted document, we will let you know straight away and offer you the choice of a longer deadline at a reduced price or the chance to send your document elsewhere. If, in rare circumstances we need more time to do the work than was previously anticipated (e.g. due to illness), we will inform you and we can negotiate how to proceed.