This tutorial shows how to copy and paste text with comments and Track Changes in Word from one file to another.
If you want to copy comments separately from the text or other Track Changes, visit “How to Copy and Paste Comments into a New File in Microsoft Word.”
The images below are from Word for Microsoft 365. The steps are the same for Word 2021, Word 2019, and Word 2016 and similar for Word 2013 and Word 2010. However, your interface may look slightly different in older versions of the software.
This tutorial is also available as a YouTube video showing all the steps in real time.
Watch more than 100 other writing-related software tutorials on my YouTube channel.
Important Privacy Alert: When you paste text with comments and Track Changes into someone else’s file, your user name or initials will appear with the copied comments and Track Changes. If you don’t want your user name or initials to appear in the other person’s file, remove your user information before copying the text. (The process for removing user information is permanent, so always make a copy of your file before starting the process.)
Also note that this process copies and pastes comments and Track Changes from all reviewers even if you are only viewing comments and Track Changes from specific reviewers when you copy the text.
How to Copy Text with Comments and Track Changes in Word from One File to Another
1. Open the file that contains the text you want to copy.
2. Select the Review tab in the ribbon.
3. Turn off Track Changes in the Tracking group.
Note that Track Changes is turned on when the icon’s background is darker than the rest of the ribbon and turned off when the icon’s background is the same color as the rest of the ribbon.
4. Select the Home tab in the ribbon.
5. Select the text you want to copy. (Pro Tip: Select Ctrl + A on your keyboard if you want to select the entire document.)
6. Select Copy in the Clipboard group in the ribbon. (Alternately, you can press Ctrl + C on your keyboard or right-click on the selected text and then select Copy from the pop-up menu.)
7. Open the second file that should receive the copied text.
8. Select the Review tab in the second file (see figure 1).
9. Turn off Track Changes in the ribbon of the second file (see figure 2).
10. Select the Home tab in the ribbon of the second file (see figure 3).
11. Place your cursor where you want to paste the copied text in the second file.
12. Select Paste in the Clipboard group in the ribbon. (Alternately, you can press Ctrl + V on your keyboard or right-click where your cursor is placed and then select Paste from the pop-up menu.)
The text with comments and Track Changes edits should now appear in the second file.
Pro Tip: If the comments and Track Changes edits don’t appear with the copied text, select the menu arrow in the Paste Options pop-up menu and ensure that the first icon in the drop-down menu, Keep Source Formatting, is selected.
13. Save the file to save your newly pasted text.
Updated October 21, 2021