The issue when to use or not use articles is really difficult for me, here are some examples I found:


  • Application for a passport
  • Application for a visa


  • Application for refund
  • Application for renewal of registration

Why can't we say "Application for a refund" or "Application for a registration"?

Could anyone list out the rules or practices?

  • Good question. Refund is countable noun and it should get an article allegedly. collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/refund Commented Jun 6, 2017 at 0:26
  • Should be "Application for a refund" since a refund is some amount of money. And "Application for registration" because registration is a process.
    – user3169
    Commented Jun 6, 2017 at 5:56

1 Answer 1


You may see "Application for Refund" as the title of a form that you have to fill out. If you are asking for this form by name, you might say:

"Could I please have an Application for Refund form" because that is the name or title of the form.

But when you are asking for a refund you say something like this depending on what the process is for getting the refund:

"I would like a refund, please."

"I would like to apply for a refund, please."

"I would like to fill out an application for a refund, please."

In the last case you are asking for the application form without knowing its title.

Please note, I'm not saying it's a rule that articles are omitted in titles, I'm just saying it seems fairly common in form titles. This may be an example of the world failing to understand and follow the rules of grammar. For example: https://www.trs.texas.gov/TRS%20Documents/form_6.pdf https://www.dmv.ca.gov/portal/dmv/detail/forms/adm/adm399

  • Thanks. So your saying we omit articles in title? Commented Sep 11, 2017 at 0:04

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