Deletion rules: time limits for criminal records

The sanction, i.e. punishment, determines how long a crime is recorded in the criminal record before it is removed. If a record has multiple sections, the data with the longest deletion period governs the removal of other data.

Data removed ten years after conviction or decision

Caution (decision by the prosecutor not to prosecute), if the person was under 18 at the time of the offence.

Data deleted five years after conviction, decision or authorisation

  • Fines, such as speeding fines.
  • Day fines.
  • Access prohibition.
  • Prison sentences that have lapsed pursuant to Chapter 35 Sections 8 or 9 of the Swedish Criminal Code or imprisonment in lieu of an unpaid fine that has lapsed under Sections 18 or 21 of the Act on the imposition of fines.
  • Conditional sentence if the individual was under 18 at the time of the offence.
  • Probation if the individual was under 18 at the time of the offence.
  • Youth service if the individual was under 18 at the time of the offence.
  • Youth care or transfer to care under the Act (1988:870) on the care of addicts in certain cases, if the individual was under 18 the time of the offence.
  • Youth supervision if the individual was under 18 at the time of the offence.
  • Not subject to sanction under Chapter 30 Section 6 of the Swedish Criminal Code if the individual was under 18 at the time of the offence.

Data removed ten years after tyears after conviction or decision

  • Conditional sentence.
  • Waiver of prosecution (the prosecutor's decision not to prosecute an offence if the individual was over 18 at the time of the offence).
  • Probation.
  • Youth service if the individual was over 18 at the time of the offence.
  • Youth care or transfer to care under the Act (1988:870) on the care of addicts in certain cases, if the individual was over 18 the time of the offence.
  • Youth supervision if the individual was over 18 at the time of the offence.
  • Not subject to sanction under Chapter 30 Section 6 of the Swedish Criminal Code if the individual was over 18 at the time of the offence.
  • Decisions regarding restraining orders and prohibitions under Chapter 3 Section 5 of the Law on European Protection Orders (2015:642).
  • A prison sentence to be regarded as fully served by previous deprivation of liberty or from which a person has been completely released by a pardon.

Data removed ten years after the sentence has been served

  • Imprisonment as well as imprisonment in lieu of an unpaid fine (10 years after release).
  • Institutional care of young persons (10 years after the sanction has been fully enforced).
  • Forensic psychiatric care (10 years after discharge).

Foreign convictions

A conviction in another EU country and entered in the Swedish criminal record in accordance with Section 4a of the Criminal Records Act (1998:620) shall be deleted in accordance with the same rules as apply to convictions in Sweden. The same procedure applies to countries outside the EU under Section 4 of the Criminal Records Act (1998:620). This means that time limits for deletion are determined by the sanction (see list above).

More about removal (deletion)

Data in the criminal record shall be retained as long as the deletion period of another article of data has not expired. The exception is fines, which do not affect the period of deletion of other data.

The maximum time a criminal record remains is 20 years, excepting prison sentences, which are deleted at the latest 20 years after release, and submission to forensic psychiatric care, which is deleted at the latest 20 years after discharge (Section 18 and Section 17).

A reported offence that does not lead to a conviction is not recorded in the criminal record. Nor is an acquittal at first instance recorded in the record. In the event of an acquittal by a higher court, the crime is removed from the criminal record after the date on which the judgment acquires legal force.

The provisions on deletion from the criminal record are contained in the Criminal Records Act.

Criminal Records Act on the Riksdag websiteb