Mr. Kim (was / has been / had been) busy for two weeks last month.

Which tense is correct when accompanied by the phrase 'for two weeks last month'?

  • 1
    Both "was" and "had been" work. "has been" is wrong because the present perfect should be used when the action's time includes the current time.
    – Barmar
    Commented May 4 at 7:32
  • Or as I prefer to state it, when the time-phrase or context excludes the present, the present perfect cannot be used.
    – TimR
    Commented May 4 at 11:34
  • As your question is currently stated, there is no single right answer. One would have to know how Mr. Kim’s state of being busy relates to other things going on in the discourse. Commented May 5 at 14:15

1 Answer 1

  1. Simple past is fully correct - Mr. Kim was busy for two weeks last month.

  2. Past perfect is correct, but some may argue that there should be two action verbs when past perfect tense is used. Also if you can convey the meaning in simple past why should you use past perfect? - Mr. Kim had been busy for two weeks last month.

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    Commented May 15 at 20:58

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