I have ConfigFormBase. It has a form element with '#type' => 'entity_autocomplete'.

When I add my custom element validation by '#element_validate' => [[get_class($this), 'validateReferencedItemExistence']] the original element validation which comes by the element type (Drupal\Core\Entity\Element\EntityAutocomplete::validateEntityAutocomplete) won't be added anymore.

After spending hours in the jungle of the FormBuilder class code I finally found the corresponding lines:

   if (isset($element['#type']) && empty($element['#defaults_loaded']) && ($info = $this->elementInfo->getInfo($element['#type']))) {
      // Overlay $info onto $element, retaining preexisting keys in $element.
      $element += $info;
      $element['#defaults_loaded'] = TRUE;

I find this kinda bad approach, that you cannot extend the list of the validation items. What is the reason behind it?

How could I make a workaround / solve this issue?

(Just by calling Drupal\Core\Entity\Element\EntityAutocomplete::validateEntityAutocomplete in my custom validation I would create an unnecessary depedency in my code. (Just think about if they change their way of validation with a different function))

  • You need to use the syntax PHP has for adding items to an array. If you use $array['item'] = []; you are replacing $array['item']; if you use $array['item'][] = []; you are adding items (supposing that $array['item'] is an array).
    – apaderno
    Apr 11, 2017 at 12:35
  • Am aware of that, however this is not the situation here, because if the key already exists, the element type validation won't be added anymore by the FormBuilder class.
    – ssibal
    Apr 11, 2017 at 20:57

1 Answer 1


You need add the definitions defined in the getInfo() method of that type explicitly yourself, there is currently no other way to do that.

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