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removing hyperlinks from PDFs for court filings

Some courts will not allow PDFs to be electronically filed which contain hyperlinks. This can really become a problem if you have PDFs with many pages and a url has been added to the footer for each page, as is common with PDFs created from SEC filings found on EDGAR.

Printing out the PDF as a hard copy and photo scanning is too much of a hassle, and there may not be time to go back and redo the PDFs without the footers containing the urls - or urls could be scattered in the body of the document. Removing links in EDIT mode may also be too time consuming.

Flattening a PDF by writing it to a new PDF will not necessarily remove hyperlinks in the PDF, and hyperlinks can still be present when a conversion to PDF/A format is performed.

The Acrobat tool which will remove web links . . .

. . . will not take out all hyperlinked web addresses:

Going under Preferences in Acrobat and unselecting 'Create links from URLs' in the Documents category will only deactivate hyperlinks for the current user of the PDF - not recipients you forward it to.

Instead try converting the PDF to a multipage TIFF image using an editor like FoxIT. (Acrobat will not convert a PDF to the multipage TIFF format.) This software has an option to export the PDF as a multipage TIFF image. When saving the file click on Settings and set the conversion type to 'Single File'.

You can then open the PDF back up in Acrobat which will reformat it as a PDF. The formatting will be retained but the links will no longer be active.


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