I've been struggling with this for a bit now but I cannot seem to find a way to wrap either layer names or headings in a legend. I can see how to wrap descriptions, labels, and make multiline legend titles but nothing for layer names and headings.

I have a long layer name/heading as pictured below and I cannot get it to run past the width of the symbols and labels. I can think of a couple of workarounds including moving this layer to the top and putting the layer name into the Legend title but would prefer not to have this item at the top of my legend.

enter image description here

  • i use photoshop. esri's legend builder is not really the greatest for complex legends.
    – ed.hank
    Mar 21, 2018 at 20:26

2 Answers 2


To get layer names/headings to wrap I had to select Wrap labels in the Layout tab in Legend Properties, set an appropriate wrap length (in this case 100pt), and then add spaces to the end of a label in the layer to (I think) force ArcMap to wrap a label and therefore also allow the heading to run to the length of the invisibly wrapped label.

enter image description here


In the legend editor, I selected wrap labels (as well as wrap descriptions), set it to 100 pt and clicked ok. Then my long layer names still didn't show up so I begrudgingly copied the legend in order to explode it (to ungroup pieces and display graphically) and the "copy" I made magically had the long text in the label! Problem solved :) Now anytime I edit long labels and parts of them disappear, I just do a copy/paste of the legend and it shows right back up.

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