Your question confuses me a bit. What's missing is "WHY are the instructions displayed?" What makes them so important? More to the point, what makes them so important to the user?You say it's a simple form, but also say they must read the instructions before filling it out. If it's simple, what are all the instructions for? I haven't seen the form and already I'm confused.People will do things if they understand (and agree with) the purpose for doing them. If they don't understand the need for the instructions (e.g. because the form appears to be simple), you'll have a hard time getting users to read them (they won't see the need).My suggestion would be to take a step back from the design a bit and look at the form's purpose. If the instructions are to minimize data entry errors, look for ways in your design to do that and eliminate an instruction or two. For example, do real-time validation of things like zip codes, phone numbers, usernames, and anything else your web page can do.If the instructions are to educate the user on some specific process, look at the process to see if it can be made simpler or more obvious such that it doesn't need any explanation.Finally, don't forget user testing--ask some potential (or representative) users what they think works for them.