Receiving Error Message: Error! Bookmark Not Defined When Using MS Word XP

Filed under: Word 

To fix this error in MS Word: “Error! Bookmark Not Defined”, follow these steps:

  1. In MS Word, from the View menu, select Toolbars, and then click Outlining.
  2. If the document contains multiple tables of contents, place the insertion point inside the table of contents that is causing the problem and needs to be updated.
  3. On the Outlining toolbar, click the Update TOC button.
  4. Outline toolbar in MS Word

This will refresh the TOC, which updates the reference and resolves the error.


5 Comments to “Receiving Error Message: Error! Bookmark Not Defined When Using MS Word XP”

  1. Drew says:

    Great tip, thank you………….fixed my errors!


  2. Jana says:

    Thank you!

  3. Susan says:

    that didn’t work for me but here’s something that did:
    • Highlight and delete the table of contents that has this error message on it.
    • Go to Reference
    • Click on Table of Contents
    • On the bottom click on Insert Table of Contents
    • Click on Options
    • If you have more than one Table of Contents in your document, go through and remove all of them except the one or ones that have the error message on it
    • Click OK
    • Click OK again
    • When the box pops up that says “do you want to replace the selected Table of Contents” click OK
    The TOC should be replaced and corrected.

  4. Kyle says:

    @Susan – Thanks for sharing your experience. Hope it can help some others in case the tip did not work for them too.

  5. Laila says:


    Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge. I have been struggling with this issue for about 2 weeks trying every thing that you can think of.
    Your method was perfect to fix the error I encountered.

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