Unit 4.1

Future Perfect Continuous

Tenses

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Introduction

We use future perfect continuous tense to talk about a continuous action that will be completed at some point in the future. It is often used with time expressions.

Form

Future perfect continuous has these three forms:

Affirmative

Its structure, in the affirmative form, is:
Subject + will + have + been + [verb + -ing] + …

SUBJECTFUTURE SIMPLEAUXILIARY VERBBEENPRESENT PARTICIPLE
I/You/He/She/It/We/You/They willhavebeenwalking

Negative

Its structure, in the negative form, is:
Subject + will not + have + been + [verb + -ing] + …

  • Negative short form is: won’t.
SUBJECTFUTURE SIMPLE + NOTAUXILIARY VERBBEENPRESENT PARTICIPLE
I/You/He/She/It/We/You/They will not
havebeenwalking

Interrogative

Its structure, in the interrogative form, is:
Will + Subject + have + been + [verb + -ing] + …?

FUTURE SIMPLESUBJECTAUXILIARY VERBBEENPRESENT PARTICIPLEQUESTION MARK
WillI/You/He/She/It/We/You/Theyhavebeenwalking?

Example

  • won’t have been investing in architecture by the end of 2020.
  • The company will have been already trading for 2 weeks after the new manager’s arrival.
  • After the new manager arrival, the company still won’t have been trading.
  • Will the company have been trading for 2 weeks after the new manager arrival?
  • They will have been negotiating for 3 years this summer.

Use

We use future perfect continuous to talk about a continuous action that will be completed at some point in the future.

We can use time expressions such as for two minutes, for 5 years, since Saturday… 

We can use future perfect to show the relation of cause and effect.

Summary

We use future perfect continuous to talk about a continuous action that will be completed at some point in the future and to show the relation of cause and effect.

We can use it in its different forms:

  • Affirmative: We start with the subject followed by will have been and a verb that ends with -ing.
  • Negative: We start with the subject followed by will not have been and a verb that ends with -ing.
  • Interrogative: We start with will followed by the subject followed by have been and the a verb that ends with -ing (the sentence ends with a question mark).

We can use time expressions such as: for 5 years, since Saturday… 

For example:

— Affirmative: I will have been working with you for 3 years next week.” 
— Negative: “I will not have been working with you for 3 years next week.”
— Interrogative: Will I have been working with you for 3 years next week?
We use the future perfect continuous because the action of working for 3 years will (or will not) be completed in the future, meaning next week.
“I will be working next week.” = We use the future continuous because we assume that this event will be taking place in the future.
“I will work next week.” = We use the future simple because we express a future intention.

Let’s revise this content within the {Form} section. Take a look at the {Example} section that shows its use within a context.

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