Are you unable to edit your Word document? Does it say “Read-only” at the top of the page?

If so, it means your document is read-only, meaning that you cannot add or delete content on the document. This happens when a Word file has been saved on a shared network and one user’s permissions do not allow this. Fortunately, there are a few fixes to try if you’ve got read-only on a document.

In this article we will guide you step-by-step on how to remove read only from a Word document using simple steps, but first let’s have a look at why would a Word document keep saving as read only.

Why does my Word Document Keep Saving as Read Only

Many people complain why their Word documents keeps saving as read-only files. The actual reason for this is yet to be well understood, but the reports about this are rampant in Word 2003 or older versions.

Although all documents created using Word 2007 and higher versions are stored as normal files unless specified otherwise by you, this issue is still a nuisance for some users. This problem occurs frequently if there’s an add-in feature that is incompatible with the latest Word update and by default the document is saved as a read-only file for security purposes by a software or some feature.

Additionally, there’s read only attribute setting on Windows operating system that can inadvertently prevents users from making changes to the document’s contents. This includes formatting, deleting text, or saving. It is usually set when you open a document by mistake or when you are working on an older computer with limited access to permission levels.

Fortunately, this issue can be easily resolved and in this guide we’ll show you a few simple steps on how to change a document from read only to be able to edit its contents.

Remove read only in Word via removing restrict editing

Remove read-only Word with password

The standard feature from Word when you download a document from the internet is to disable editing, but often there’s a button that allows you to “enable editing.”

If this isn’t your case and the document is still in a protected view, then you can remove read only in Word using these simple steps to allow you to edit the file.

  • Open your read-only document and click on the Review tab in the Ribbon. Alternatively, for the latest MS Word program, find the Developer tab in the ribbon and click on it. review tab
  • On the farthest right of the ribbon, choose the Restrict Editing option which will prompt a task pane to appear on the right-side of the screen. restrict editing
  • Click on the button that reads Stop Protectionon the bottom of the task pane to remove read only from the Word document. Unless its password protected, this simple steps will re-enable editing. stop protection If the document is password protected, you’ll need to enter the password and click OK to unprotect the document in the password box that appears on the screen. stop protection with password

If you don’t have the password to remove restrict editing, then look no further. We recommend using PassFab for Word, a third-party professional tool for unprotecting a Word document; by recovering Word open password or removing Word Restrict Editing—in the fastest and easiest way possible without a password.

Remove read-only Word without password

If you don’t want to go through the trouble of using Word’s built-in features to remove read only Word, you can simply use PassFab for Word. It has a user-friendly interface which makes it easy to use even for new users. In just a few clicks, PassFab for Word allows you to easily remove read only from Word documents of all formats—from .doc, .docx, .dotm, to .dot and more.

To remove read only Word:

  • Download PassFab for Word from our website and install it on your computer and follow these simple steps.
  • Click on Remove Word Restrict Editing after launching the application on your device. select move restrict editing
  • Upload your restricted file into the program and click on Remove to get started. In a few minutes, the program will remove the password and enable you to edit your document. import word document
Here are some of the key advantages of using PassFab for Word:
  • This professional tool as a broad compatibility with all Word versions and supports all Word document formats.
  • The tool uses advanced and latest decryption algorithms to ensure 100% success rate, regardless of how complex the password is.
  • PassFab for Word is simple and easy to navigate; with an elaborate and intuitive interface that has short descriptive steps to follow to regain access to your encrypted Word document.
  • The removing password process is fast and hardly within a few minutes you will be finished.
  • You are able to bypass your password without losing any data or content from your file.

Here is the video guide:

Remove read only in Word via changing file’s properties

Some documents are set to be read-only in their default settings, meaning you cannot make changes to them. File properties are generally used to change default or sharing settings of a program and sometimes to customize a file. We will show you how to change a document from read only using the file’s properties using the steps below.

Please note that this step also works for other Word versions, not only Windows 2016.

  • Right-click on the Word document you want to remove Read-only protection from then choose Properties option.
  • Uncheck the Read-only box from the General tab and click OK to apply changes. uncheck read only

Your document will be unrestricted from read only protection and allow you to make changes or edit the document’s content.


Word documents opening as read only files is a common issue. With the inability to freely edit documents due to read only protection, users are in need of an efficient and effective solution for dealing with this common problem of how to remove read only from Word. Although there are several costly solutions available for removing read only Word, we have an effective solution that is easy to use without any frustration. Not only does PassFab for Word effectively remove read only Word protection, it also has a wide range of features that can be used to make life easier for your professional document management.