Video – Turn Off Compatibility Mode in MS Word

If this setting pops up when you open Word, then follow the steps below to go back to the normal MS Word settings.

What is Compatibility Mode?

It’s a feature in Word designed to ensure that documents created in earlier versions can be opened and edited in newer versions without any loss of formatting or functionality.

So, when you open a document in a newer version of Word that was created in an older version, it’ll automatically switches to Compatibility Mode.

Important – in Compatibility Mode, certain formatting options specific to newer versions of Word may be disabled or behave differently to maintain compatibility with the older document format. This includes things like new layout options, fonts, and editing features introduced in later versions of Word.

While in Compatibility Mode, you may notice a message at the top of the document window informing you that the document is in this mode. To take advantage of all the features available in the current version of Word, it’s usually recommended to convert documents out of Compatibility Mode when possible.

Video Tutorial – How to Turn off Compatibility Mode

The following video shows you how to do this.

To turn off Compatibility Mode in Microsoft Word, follow these steps:

  1. Open the document that is in Compatibility Mode.
  2. Click the File tab in the top-left corner of the screen.
  3. Select Info from the menu on the left-hand side.
  4. Look for the section labeled Compatibility Mode. If your document is in Compatibility Mode, you’ll see a message here indicating that it is.
  5. To disable Compatibility Mode, click the Convert button. This action will convert the document to the current version of Word’s file format.
  6. After clicking Convert, you may see a prompt confirming that you want to convert the document. Click OK to proceed with the conversion.
  7. Once the conversion is complete, your document should now be in the current version’s format, and Compatibility Mode will be turned off.

By following these steps, you should be able to disable Compatibility Mode in Microsoft Word.

Next Steps

As always, if there’s something you’d like to know more about, you can reach me at: or