Present perfect: 'just', 'yet', 'still' and 'already'

Present perfect: 'just', 'yet', 'still' and 'already'

Do you know how to use just, yet, still and already with the present perfect? Test what you know with interactive exercises and read the explanation to help you.

Look at these examples to see how just, yet, still and already are used.

I've just seen Sai. He's really enjoying his new job.
We haven't decided what to do yet.
I still haven't called Yumi to see how she is.
I've already had lunch but I'll join you for coffee.

Try this exercise to test your grammar.

Grammar test 1

'just', 'yet', 'still' and 'already': Grammar test 1

Read the explanation to learn more.

Grammar explanation

We often use just, yet, still and already with the present perfect because they are related to the present moment. This page focuses on the meaning and use of these words when they are used with the present perfect.


Just used with the present perfect means 'a short time before'.

I've just seen Susan coming out of the cinema.
Mike's just called. Can you ring him back, please?
Have you just taken my pen?!

Just comes between the auxiliary verb (have/has) and the past participle.


Yet used with the present perfect means 'at any time up to now'. We use it to emphasise that we expect something to happen soon. Yet (in this context) is only used in negative sentences and questions.

Have you finished your homework yet?
I haven't finished it yet. I'll do it after dinner.
A. Where's Sam? B: He hasn't arrived yet.

Yet comes at the end of the sentence or question.


Still used with the present perfect means that something hasn't happened. We use it to emphasise that we expected the thing to happen earlier. Still (in this context) is only used in negative sentences.

I've been waiting for an hour and the bus still hasn't come.
They promised me that report yesterday but they still haven't finished it.
She still hasn't replied to my email. Maybe she's on holiday.

Still comes between the subject (the bus, they, etc.) and auxiliary verb (haven't/hasn't).


Already used with the present perfect means 'before now'. We use it to emphasise that something happened before something else or earlier than expected.

I've already spent my salary and it's two weeks before payday.
He wanted to see
Sudden Risk but I've already seen it.
The train's left already!

Already can come between the auxiliary and the main verb or at the end of the clause.

Do this exercise to test your grammar again.

Grammar test 2

'just', 'yet', 'still' and 'already': Grammar test 2

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Hi, I do not quite understand this sentence. "However, we do not use the present perfect with verbs relating to knowledge (think, remember, know etc) or to senses (see, feel, smell etc)." Did you mean that present perfect tense for verbs related to knowledge and senses are not used with 'already', or did you mean that typically present perfect tense for verbs related to knowledge and senses are just not applicable? Are these examples wrong then? I have known him to be someone kind. All along, I have thought that apples are sour.
Profile picture for user Peter M.

Submitted by Peter M. on Fri, 11/09/2020 - 08:06

In reply to by Piglet


Hello again Piglet,

I'm sorry if my reply was not clear. I meant that we do not generally use the present perfect with verbs relating to knowledge when we use already. I assumed this was clear from the context of the original question but should have made it explicit to avoid confusion.

The examples you quote are fine. Obviously, they do not use the adverb already.



The LearnEnglish Team

Hello again, Does the rule and explanation have to do with knowledge and senses being stative verbs? Are there exceptions to it? "They've already seen the movie" sounds like a correct sentence to me, despite see being a stative verb. "I already knew" - this is correct right? Thank you, LearnEnglish Team.

Hello again Piglet,

These are not rules so much as tendencies - a useful rule of thumb, but not a fixed grammatical rule.

It is possible to use stative verbs with the present perfect and already in certain contexts. For example:

You should get a dog. Until you've owned a dog, you don't know what a joy it is.

I've already owned a dog, thanks. I don't want another one.


Note that 'see' in your example is not a stative verb. It's used in this context as a substitute for 'watch', which is dynamic.



The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by IsabelTim_123 on Thu, 20/08/2020 - 11:23

Dear English Team, May I know what is the difference between a sentence with "yet" and one without "yet"? For example: "I have not yet finished my proposal." vs " I have not finished my proposal" "Has your passport arrived yet?" vs "Has your passport arrived?" Another question: I saw a structure of be/have yet to do sth. "They have yet to reply to our offer." How is it different from "They have not yet replied to our offer"? Many thanks.

Hi IsabelTim_123,

Adding yet in the sentences adds a bit of extra meaning. It means that the speaker has some expectation that the action should have happened by now, or will happen soon. For example, I have not finished my proposal yet suggests that he/she might finish it sometime soon. Without yet, the sentence is just stating that the proposal isn't finished. Has your passport arrived yet? suggests that I expected it to have already arrived. If it's very late, for example, you could say this.

About your second question, the two sentences mean the same thing! But the first version (be/have + yet to do something) is more formal in style.

Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

Thanks for your detailed explanation! Could "Has your passport arrived yet?" be used when I expect the passport to arrive soon instead of expecting it to have already arrived? Also, is there any difference between "be yet to do" and "have yet to do"? Thank you.

Hi IsabelTim_123,

Yes! You can use yet in that situation.

No, there's no difference in meaning between be yet to and have yet to. But I just checked the frequency of both phrases, and it seems that have yet to is more commonly used. 

Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

Profile picture for user CHÉKYTAN

Submitted by CHÉKYTAN on Thu, 06/08/2020 - 14:39

Is it necessary to use 'still' and 'yet' with negative context only?