Modal Verbs of Permission & Request

Learn how to make requests and give or ask for permission with modal verbs.

Modal verbs are special verbs that give other verbs more meaning. They can describe how, when, or why another action happens. Two ways that you can use modal verbs are to make requests and ask/give permission.


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Making Requests

You can make formal (more polite) or informal requests with can, could, will, would.



More Examples


  • Can you fix the TV, please?

  • Could you pass me the salt?

  • Will you please be quiet?

  • Would you turn the music down?

Asking Permission

You can talk about permissions (giving and asking) with can, could, may, and might. Can is generally informal whereas could, may, and might are more formal.


For Example,



More Examples


  • May we ask about the price of the house?

  • Could you please tell the waiter we are ready?

  • Can I call you tomorrow?

  • Can I ask what your name is?


Review how to form modal verbs in a sentence here.



Practice using modal verbs to ask and give permission and make requests.