When you share documents in Google Docs, Sheets, Slides and Drive, you have the ability to configure the permissions you want to allow. You can allow others to edit the documents, make comments, or just view them. Another very useful feature for Google paid accounts is the ability to only allow temporary access to the shared document.

By setting an expiration date for your document, spreadsheet, or slide show, you can share it with customers or vendors for a short time. This is a good way to limit access and the role only allows view and comment permissions.

If you want to test the temporary access feature for a document that you are preparing to share, here is how to configure it.

Set an expiration date for a file

Open the application where the file you want to share is located. Again, the feature is available in Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Drive for users of paid Google accounts.

With the document open, click Share at the top as you normally would to share a document. Currently, you must have already shared the document with the person in order to set an expiration. So if you haven’t added them yet, do so now and then you can change the access.

Click the permissions drop-down box to the right of the person in the list and choose Give temporary access. If you previously gave the user Editor privileges, that will automatically change to Commentator. If you prefer, you can also give it viewer access.

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Select the expiration date using the calendar that opens when you click on the date. The time cannot be adjusted; the default date is 23:59 on the selected date.

When done, click Keep to apply the change.

If you click the button Share To review the people you share with or to add them, you’ll see a watch icon next to anyone you’ve given temporary access to for reference.

Edit or delete temporary access

If you want to change the selected date or remove the expiration, you can do so at any time before the expiration date.

Click on Share and then use the drop-down box next to the person in the list to select Edit temporary access.

You can change the date by clicking on it and using the pop-up calendar. Or, you can remove the temporary access expiration by clicking Delete expiration.

Click on Done and be sure to click Keep when you finish editing or removing the expiration date to apply the change.

Share with expiration date in Google Apps

When you want to allow access to a document for a limited time, the temporary access feature is ideal. It could be a document that you want others to review before a deadline or that is going to change soon. So remember the expiration date option when sharing on Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Drive.

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