How to Insert a Document in Word

Learn to embed files, including other Word files, into Word

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If you have an existing Microsoft Word document that would augment a document you're working on, you have a few options. But if you want an entire document added to the pages of a second Word doc, your best bet is knowing how to insert a document into Word.

Instructions in this article apply to Word 2019, Word 2016, Word 2013, Word 2010, and Word for Office 365.

How to Insert a Word Document Into Another Word Document

Word will insert the document into the current document without changing the formatting applied to either document. Images, tables, shapes, and other objects in the existing document will carry over into the new Word file as well.

Any changes made to the contents of the inserted document will not affect the original Word document.

  1. Start Word and open the document into which you want to insert another Word document.

    Alternatively, select New > Blank Document to open a new, blank Word document to insert an existing document into.

  2. Place the cursor on the spot in the document where you want to insert an existing Word file.

  3. Select the Insert tab.

    Screenshot of Insert tab in Word
  4. Select the drop-down arrow next to Object in the Text group.

    Screenshot of Object drop-down menu in Word
  5. Choose Text from File in the drop-down list that appears. The Insert from File dialog box will open.

    If you select Object from the Object drop-down menu, you can embed an existing Word document as a clickable file from the Create from File tab of the Object dialog box that appears. Alternatively, you can create a new, blank document that becomes a clickable object when saved using the Create New tab in that dialog box. This is a useful way to reference a document without importing the text into your existing document.

  6. Navigate to the Word file you want to insert into the current Word document and select it.

    Screenshot of Insert File dialog box in Word
  7. Select Insert. Word will insert the document into the current document.

    Screenshot of inserted document in Word
  8. Save the changes to the combined file, if desired.

  9. You can repeat the steps to insert additional Word docs into the Word file you are currently working on.

How to Insert a Word Document with Headers or Footers into Word

If the file you want to insert has headers and footers you want to carry over into the new file, add a section break before selecting the insertion point in the new document.

  1. Place the cursor on the spot in the document where you want to insert an existing Word file.

  2. Select the Layout tab.

  3. Select the Breaks drop-down arrow in the Page Setup group.

  4. Either select Next Page to add a section break and insert the Word document starting on the next page, or select Continuous to add a section break and insert the Word document starting on the same page.

    Screenshot of Insert Section Breaks
  5. Insert the Word document using the same steps listed above. The header and footer will only be applied to the pages of the newly inserted document.