For mandatory fields If there are fields that already have default values (cannot be left blank), should an asterisk (*) still be used to indicate that they are required?

Example: enter image description here

  • 2
    I think you're trying to solve the wrong problem here. You're just assuming that it's UX law that you use an asterisk to indicate mandatory fields. I do it the other way around - if a field is mandatory then I don't leave any indicator, but if there are optional fields then I'll mark those as '(Optional)' instead. People just assume if a field is there then you need to fill it in, so I only draw their attention to fields that aren't mandatory. That would also solve your problem here.
    – JonW
    Commented Jun 10 at 10:33

3 Answers 3


Good question. If the user cannot leave it empty, because it's a radio button or a switch that always have some value, I'd say it's unnecessary. Required fields indicate why there is an error if you leave it empty and that we require you to fill it in, so we can proceed with the form. In this case, there will never be the error, thus required indicator is not necessary or even would be redundant.

But, if you look from the other side, and you just want to be consistent no matter if the value is predefined or not, then of course you can also add the aterisk, it just doesn't add any value.


Why an asterisk? It's not wise to assume that people will always know the meaning of an asterisk. It needs an explanation somewhere. It can easily be replaced with the text "required". If you are going this route, keep it consistent and add this to fields with default values. People are going to be confused or think it's not working correctly when a field can't be unset but seems to be optional. But as JonW mentioned in his comment, it is more natural for people to think that all fields are mandatory by default unless it has been labeled "optional", which also saves you the dilemma you raised in the question.


Depends on your user persona

Asterisk is quite common nowadays But user need to recall that it means Required (IMHO)

Ensure that the meaning of the asterisk is clear. Typically, this means including a note at the beginning or end of the form explaining that an asterisk indicates a required field (e.g., "Fields marked with * are required")

But if it's not that clear, you can use "Required" anyway in you form

  • It was common a while ago, but you see it less and less nowadays. At least that's my experience.
    – jazZRo
    Commented Jun 11 at 7:29

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