Fix: Document has insufficient permission for this operation

Madalina Dinita
by Madalina Dinita
Former Managing Editor
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Portable Data Files (PDF) are a very common file format that you will meet in pretty much any environment. They can be used in home PCs, office groups, school and more.

Of course, one of the things that make this file format especially special is how secure they can be made.

When you create a PDF file, you can restrict the number of things that can be done to it, you can make them only viewable, or you can restrict them for good via password.

The problem is when you are the one trying to open such a PDF file, and you encounter an error message stating that:

Document has insufficient permission for this operation

How can I remove document permissions from a PDF file?

1. Download the Document

You may not be able to edit a PDF document when you are viewing it online through your browser. That is why downloading it on your PC and then trying to edit it again may be the right solution.

This process varies from browser to browser, so check out each developer’s documentation on how you can do this.


Looking for a feature-rich PDF Editor? Check out our top picks!


2. Get the password from the PDF’s creator

Permission restrictions are usually hidden behind passwords. Once you’ve inputted the right password, you may do with the PDF document whatever you please.

As such, contact the creator of the PDf file and ask them for the password.

3. Use a third-party PDF unlocker

If the creator of the PDF cannot be contacted, you can try using third-party PDF unlocking software. These usually come in the form of downloadable programs or even online services.

Here are some very good PDF unlocking tools that you could try. They have proven themselves efficient at removing any type of restriction form PDF files, and some of them even offer PDF viewing and editing tools.

Keep in mind that these programs are either usually hidden behind a paywall, or they offer a free version that has limited functionality.

By following these steps, you should be able to get full access to a PDF and use it however you see fit.

Did you ever have to deal with a restricted PDF file? Tell us how you manage to bypass the problem in the comment section below.

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