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I need to place a validation message on a application which refers to the fact that a Hire Date cannot be set to a date that is older than 30 days, counting backwards from today. For example if today is the 1st of October, you could only set a date from the 1st of September or later.

Is this alright:

You cannot set this date field with a date that is 30 or more days in the past

or what is the correct way to say it?

  • I would say "The date must be no earlier than 30 days from today", but something in my mind says that something is wrong with that! :). I am not sure; I am a learner – Cardinal Jul 12 '16 at 21:23
  • "The date entered/selected must be within the last 30 days." though your example is grammatically correct. Your question may be considered off-topic though, since there really isn't an English learning question, just how to write something. My example is just my opinion. – user3169 Jul 12 '16 at 21:31
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A native speaker would understand:

Hire Date must be within the last thirty days.

But if you have an international audience comprised of speakers with varying degrees of English competence, a more roundabout way might be better, since English learners often have trouble with prepositions like within and adjectives like last.

  • A whole comprises its parts, while parts compose a whole. Thus, an audience is composed of speakers with varying degrees of English competence; or speakers with varying degrees of English competence comprise the audience. – P. E. Dant Jul 13 '16 at 0:58
  • @P.E. Dant: books.google.com/ngrams/… – Tᴚoɯɐuo Jul 13 '16 at 13:51
  • Yes, mine is a voice in the wilderness. – P. E. Dant Jul 19 '16 at 19:56
  • @P.E. Dant : Ah, that would explain it. Wilderness is not comprised of. But land, farms, gardens, country are comprised of. books.google.com/ngrams/… – Tᴚoɯɐuo Jul 20 '16 at 9:46
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    Have fun when you do that thing. – Tᴚoɯɐuo Jul 20 '16 at 21:50
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Hire date cannot be more than 30 days in the past.

If you're developing the app, you can help your user by displaying the actual date limit:

Hire date must be June 12, 2016 or after.

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    Nice answer! I think a mix would be great: "Hire date cannot be more than 30 days in the past (07/12/2016 or after)" – Alejandro Veltri Jul 12 '16 at 21:35

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