Microsoft Word Has Encountered a Problem and Needs to Close

Jean updated on Dec 11, 2020 to File Recovery | How-to Articles

You may encounter "Microsoft Word has encountered a problem and needs to close" problem on your Windows PC or Mac when there is something wrong with user account profile, application conflict, Word crashes, etc. When the issue occurs, you can fix it through a few ways here. And a professional Word file recovery tool is recommended to restore deleted or lost Word document.

Workable Solutions Step-by-step Troubleshooting
Fix 1. Solutions for Windows 10 Open Windows Explorer > click "Program Files" > "Microsoft office" >"Office". Right-click "Winword.exe"....Full steps
Fix 2. Solutions for Mac
  • Run Repair Disk Permissions on Mac
  • Reset Word for Mac preferences
  • Create a new user account...Full steps

"Microsoft word has encountered a problem and needs to close. We are sorry for the inconvenience."

Microsoft has encountered a problem and needs to close

The full error messages "Microsoft Word has encountered a problem and needs to close" may occur when you open a document in Word 2003/2007/2010/2013/2016. When you see this on Windows PC or Mac, it suggests that something serious has happened, and you're no longer able to open the Word file properly!

The causes of this problem may be:

  • Word application crashes
  • Corruption of user account profile
  • Word compatibility
  • Corruption of Word preferences

So, how to fix such a Microsoft error without losing Word contents? Here, solutions to 'Microsoft Word has encountered a problem and needs to close' problem on Windows and Mac are both covered, try the methods to resolve it and open Word without showing a blank page. Besides, in the end, get to know powerful Word file recovery software in case you need it to recover deleted or lost Word document.

Read also how to fix Microsoft Word has stopped working.

Fix Microsoft Word Has Encountered a Problem and Needs to Close in Windows 10/8/7

There are 2 options available for users choose to proceed, which is "Send Error Report" or "Don't send". Actually, neither options are effective in resolving the problem. Click either of the options, you'll be brought to safe mode. Sometimes entering into safe mode would revive Word, but most of the time it doesn't solve the problem. In this part, we will show you the step-by-step guide to completely remove the error and lets you open the Word document without shutdown.

  • Open Windows Explorer > click "Program Files" > "Microsoft office" >"Office".
  • Find and right-click "Winword.exe" > choose "Properties".
  • Click "Compatibility" and press to clear all the check boxes and at last hit upon "OK".

Also Read a file error has occurred while saving Word.

Fix Microsoft Word Has Encountered a Problem and Needs to Close on Mac

You may see this error when start Microsoft Word for Mac 2011 or 2008. Altogether, you have 3 ways to rectify the problem and prevent Word closing.

Run Repair Disk Permissions

The "Repair Disk Permissions" is available in 10.2 or later versions on Mac. You can use it to figure out reasons for the “Microsoft Word has encountered a problem and needs to close” on Mac error and fix it.

On the Go menu, please click "Utilities" > "Disk Utility" > choose the primary hard drive for your Mac > click "First Aid" > "Repair Disk Permissions".

Once the scan is over, open Word again and check is the error occurs. If this method doesn't work, move to the next one.

Reset Word for Mac preferences

As said before, corrupted Word preferences are one of the main reasons for "Word has encountered a problem". So you can troubleshoot by resetting Word preferences.

  • Click "Go" > "Home" > "Library". (Click "GO" > hold down the "Option" key on keyboard > click "Library" for OS X 10.7 or above versions)
  • Open the "Preferences" folder and drag "" to the desktop. If you can't find the file, in the Preferences look up for Microsoft folder, and drag to the desktop.
  • Now If you have Service Pack 2 installed, open "Application Support" > "Microsoft" > "Microsoft". Then, you can open a Word and check whether the error appears or not. 

Or, try another alternative method.

  • Click "Go" > "Home" > "Library".
  • Open the "Application Support" folder > "Microsoft folder" > "Office folder" > "User Templates" folder.
  • Find the Normal.dotm file in the "User Templates" folder, and drag it to the desktop.

Create a new user account

If the problem is caused by a corrupted user account, you can try to create a new user account to fix the issue.

  • In "System Preferences", click "Accounts".
  • Click the Plus sign [ + ] in the lower left corner to open the new account window- Enter the word Test for the username and leave the password box blank. Click the "Create Account" button. When you receive a warning, click "OK".

Good luck if the at least one method works, otherwise you got no choice but to remove or reinstall Office for Mac.

Bonus Tip: How to Recover Deleted/Lost Word Document on Windows and Mac

Word document loss happens from time to time due to accidental deletion, hard drive formatting, virus attack, application crashes, etc. It is a disaster to deleted a Word file that you have been working for a very long time. If you have this problem on a regular basis, don’t worry anymore, now, you have EaseUS data recovery software to help you. With this tool, it will be quite easy for you to recover the lost document, photos, audios, videos, email, and other 200+ files from HDD, SSD, USB flash drive, Pen drive, CF/SD card, etc on Windows and Mac computer.

EaseUS Data Recovery is famous for its powerful capability for hard drive formatting recovery, RAW partition recovery, lost partition recovery, virus attack recovery, recycle bin emptied data recovery, and so on. Now, follow the tutorial below to recover Word document within three steps. 

Step 1. Choose the Word file location.

Do you know where you lost Word files? If it's on a USB flash drive or SD card, connect it to your computer first. Choose the hard disk drive or a specific folder and click the San button.

select a location and click scan

Step 2. Scan all lost data.

The software will start immediately scanning all lost data on the selected drive, and you'll see more and more data showing up in the scan results. After the scan, click "Filter" and choose "Word" from the drop-down list to navigate the wanted Word documents. 

scan word files

Step 3. Select Word files and recover.

You're allowed to double-click and preview a Word file if you have Microsoft Word application installed on your computer. Finally, select the desired Word file and click "Recover".

select word documents and recover

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Frequently Asked Questions

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"EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard is the best we've seen. It's far from perfect, partly because today's advanced disk technology makes data-recovery more difficult than it was with the simpler technology of the past, but it's fast and efficient..."PCMag

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"Recover lost files, even after deleting a partition or formatting your drive."Macworld

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It is recommended to check the version installed is Free or Trial because they are different versions.

Trial has data preview function but cannot save any files, while the Free version enables to recover 2 GB files. The default free space is 500 MB and you may share the product on social media to get another 1.5 GB.

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A file is saved as 2 parts on the storage device: directory info (which is comprised by file name, time stamp and size info, etc.) and data content.

If the files with original file names and folder structures cannot be opened, one possible reason is the corrupted directory info. There is still a chance to recover the data content with the RAW Recovery method in our software.

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The storage structure of the lost files would be altered or damaged by any changes on the drive. If you save the recovered files back to the same drive, the original data structures and data content would be corrupted or overwritten, which causes permanent data loss. So you should prepare another disk to save the files.

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The Free version helps you save 2GB files, so verify the recovery quality of our product before purchase.

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It strongly depends on the capacity of your hard drive and the performance of your computer. As reference,most drive recoveries can be completed in around 10 to 12 hours for a 1-TB healthy hard drive in general conditions.

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