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Present Perfect Continuous Tense

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Introduction

The present perfect continuous (or present perfect progressive) describes an action that started in the past and has either just been completed or still continues at the present moment.

Form

The present perfect continuous is formed by combining have been (or has been) with the present participle:

Note that there is no present perfect continuous for the verb to be. You would not say have been being. You can just say have been.

Negative Form

Simply add not:

We have not been lying to you.

Asking Questions

Use the regular form:

Has he been jogging again?

Uses

Recently Completed Actions

The present perfect continuous can be used to describe actions that started in the past and have recently been completed:

They have been lobbying the government to change the law.

She has been complaining again.

Ongoing Actions

The present perfect continuous can also describe actions that started in the past and are still ongoing:

I have been sneezing constantly.

We have been searching for hours now. 

More Information

For more information, please see our introduction to all twelve verb tenses in English.