Does anyone hyphenate Bates stamp in these instances:

1. Bates stamp number (i.e., Q. Please look at the Bates stamp number at the bottom of the page.)
2. Bates stamped document (i.e. Q. We were provided this Bates stamped document from your attorney.)
3. Bates stamping (i.e.: When you were doing the Bates stamping, did you happen to notice...
4. Bates stamped (For the record, I have a document that is not Bates stamped, as the others are.)

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Comment by Lindsay Pinkham on May 12, 2009 at 21:40
Here's a couple comments from my punctuation bible, the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th Edition, regarding hyphenating compounds:

"When no ambiguity could result, as in public welfare administration or graduate student housing, hyphenation is not mandatory, though it is quite acceptable and preferred by many writers and editors."

I think "Bates stamp" is a recognized enough phrase that you don't need the hyphen in No. 1.

However, in No. 2, I personally do put a hyphen, just for clarity and to head
off any possible ambiguity.

As for No. 3, the Manual says compounds consisting of a noun plus gerund (e.g. decision making, mountain climbing) are generally not hyphenated in the noun form, but are hyphenated in the adjective form (decision-making policy).

And for No. 4: hyphenated before a noun, otherwise open (a Bates-stamped document, a document that is Bates stamped).

I highly recommend the Chicago Manual of Style. All questions are resolved!
Comment by Rebecca Blasco on May 11, 2009 at 14:04
Bates-stamped document is hyphenated because stamped ends in 'ed' and the next word is a noun. I can't remember the precise rule, but that's basically it. I would not hyphenate any of the other ones.

Hope that helps.
Comment by Naola "Sam" Vaughn on May 11, 2009 at 4:49
I have never seen it hyphenated either, and my scopist was hyphenating it according to Morson's - plus some; so I wanted to know what everyone else did.
Comment by Rosalie DeLeonardis on May 10, 2009 at 19:43
Back when I was a legal secretary in the 1980s I don't remember the attorneys or any secretary ever putting a hypen on Bates stamp, Bates stamped doucment, et cetera.
Comment by Brenda Rogers on May 10, 2009 at 9:59
Sam, I'm probably overthinking it, but this was my process. "Tape recording" is a noun, the actual magnetic recording on magnetic tape; "tape-record" is the verb. I was looking at the term in your sentence as a verb rather than a noun, but I get tangled up in those sometimes. I'll go with the majority here: 2 and 4.
Comment by Randy Renier Espinoza on May 10, 2009 at 8:19
Hi. I'm new here. I just like to post my opinion. I would hyphenate Numbers 2 and 4. In No. 2, "Bates stamped" is used as a compount verb used as an adjective. In No. 4, I think "Bates stamp" still functions as an adjective, only that it appears after the noun it modifies.
Comment by Naola "Sam" Vaughn on May 10, 2009 at 4:18
Bates stamping is an action. You can't just be Batesing, but you can be stamping. I'm trying to think of other two-word verbs, such as tape recording, rear ending, etc.
Comment by Brenda Rogers on May 9, 2009 at 20:19
So that takes care of 2 and 4. 3 I'd need to research, but it seems like it should be hyphenated, following the word "the." Bates isn't doing the stamping; it's a unit: the Bates-stamping.
Comment by Jenny Griffin, RMR CRR CCRR CRC on May 9, 2009 at 20:14
Morson's Rule 148:

A Bates-stamped exhibit. An exhibit that is Bates-stamped.

That's the only example I can find. Now I really want to know about the other options!
Comment by Brenda Rogers on May 9, 2009 at 20:04
What Trina said. I'm inclined to hyphenate 3 also.

BAFRP - Bates stamp

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