How to Force Copy a Google Doc: Step-by-Step Guide


Matthew Burleigh

Ever had the need to make a copy of a Google Doc but found yourself hitting a wall because of restricted permissions? Don’t fret! With a few simple steps, you can force copy a Google Doc and save yourself the hassle. Let’s dive into how to make this happen in a jiffy.

Step by Step Tutorial: Force Copy a Google Doc

Before we get into the nitty-gritty, let’s understand what these steps will achieve. By the end of this, you’ll have a new copy of the Google Doc in question, free from any editing restrictions that might have been placed on the original document.

Step 1: Open the Google Doc

Open the Google Doc that you want to copy.

Once you’ve located the Google Doc you want to copy, make sure you’re logged into your Google account. If you can view the document, you’re on the right track.

Step 2: Check the URL

Look at the URL in your web browser’s address bar.

The URL is the web address that shows at the top of your screen. It should look something like "…".

Step 3: Modify the URL

Change the end of the URL from "/edit" to "/copy".

By altering the URL, you’re creating a command that signals Google to create a copy of the document when the link is used.

Step 4: Hit Enter

Press Enter to load the new URL.

After you hit enter, Google will process the command, and a new page will load, prompting you to make a copy of the document.

Step 5: Confirm the Copy

Click on the ‘Make a copy’ button.

By clicking this, you’re telling Google, "Yes, I want to copy this document!" and it will begin creating your copy.

After completing these steps, you’ll be the proud owner of a new Google Doc copy, ready to be edited and altered to your heart’s content.

Tips for Force Copying a Google Doc

  • Always check if you have permission to make a copy of a document. Respect copyright and privacy policies.
  • If you’re not able to view the document, these steps won’t work. You need at least viewing access.
  • Remember, this method only works for Google Docs. Other file types might require different steps.
  • You can rename the copied document to avoid confusion with the original.
  • If you plan on sharing the copy, double-check the sharing settings so you can control who has access.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I force copy a Google Doc that I don’t have access to?

No, you need to have at least viewing access to the document to make a copy.

Will the original creator know I made a copy?

No, the original creator won’t be notified if you make a copy using this method.

Can I use this method to bypass copyright?

No, this method is not a way to bypass copyright. Always ensure you have the right to copy a document.

What if the ‘Make a copy’ button does not appear?

If that happens, it likely means the document has been set to restrict copying. You’ll need to contact the owner for a copy.

Can I force copy other Google file types like Sheets or Slides?

Yes, the same method works for Google Sheets and Slides. Just change ‘document’ in the URL to ‘spreadsheets’ or ‘presentation’ respectively.


  1. Open the Google Doc.
  2. Check the URL.
  3. Modify the URL.
  4. Hit Enter.
  5. Confirm the Copy.


Force copying a Google Doc is a simple yet effective way to maintain your productivity flow, especially when working with shared documents. It allows you to have a version of the document that you can edit and tweak without altering the original. It’s also a great way to backup important files or create templates from existing documents. Remember to use this power responsibly and always respect the creator’s rights and privacy. With this knowledge at your fingertips, gone are the days of being at the mercy of restrictive document permissions. Happy copying!

Matthew Burleigh

Matthew Burleigh has been writing tech content online for more than ten years. He enjoys writing about Google Docs in addition to many other applications and devices and has cumulatively covered Google’s word-processing application in hundreds of different articles.

He has been published on dozens of popular websites, and his works have accumulated millions of pageviews.
While focused primarily on tutorials and guides for popular electronics like the iPhone and iPad, as well as common applications like Microsoft Word, Powerpoint, and Excel, he covers topics across the entire technology spectrum.

You can read his bio here.

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