Subordinate conjunctions and agreement in the future tense

English grammar (See all)

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Subordinate conjunctions and agreement in the future tense

In a sentence where the main clause is in the future, the subordinate sentence introduced by a time conjunction (when, while, by the time...) must remain in the present tense:
I will call you when I get to the office. I will call you when I have arrived at the office.
By the time we reach the age of 40, we'll have a house in the Hamptons. When we are 40, we will already have a house in the Hamptons. (region of Long Island, New York State)
Will you still need me, will you still feed me, when I'm 64? Will you still need me, will you still feed me, when I am 64 years old? (Beatles song)

Be careful not to confuse these constructions with interrogative sentences, or with sentences in the present tense which have a subordinate sentence in the future:
Do you know when Susie will come back from England?
I wonder when Susie will come back from England.


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