Delete your information (right to erasure)

When doesn't the right to erasure apply?

The right to erasure does not apply if processing is necessary for one of the following reasons: 

  • to exercise the right of freedom of expression and information; 
  • to comply with a legal obligation; 
  • for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority; 
  • for archiving purposes in the public interest, scientific research historical research or statistical purposes where erasure is likely to render impossible or seriously impair the achievement of that processing; or 
  • for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims. 

The UK GDPR also specifies two circumstances where the right to erasure will not apply to special category data: 

  • if the processing is necessary for public health purposes in the public interest (e.g. protecting against serious cross-border threats to health, or ensuring high standards of quality and safety of health care and of medicinal products or medical devices); or
  • if the processing is necessary for the purposes of preventative or occupational medicine; for the working capacity of an employee; for medical diagnosis; for the provision of health or social care; or for the management of health or social care systems or services. This only applies where the data is being processed by or under the responsibility of a professional subject to a legal obligation of professional secrecy (e.g. a health professional).