Google Support - Trash says:

Anything you remove from Google Drive will be in your Trash until you permanently delete the files or restore them.

However, they are known to be loose with words, and Google's support documents aren't meant to be elaborate (read as literal).

Is there more information regarding this issue?

Can we count on items in "Trash" to be still recoverable after a few months/years?

3 Answers 3


No, it will not be.

Thanks for asking in the forum. We don't currently support an auto-delete function - it's important that users don't unintentionally trash files that are important to them. Hope that answers your question.


Also, yes, the deleted documents can be recovered for a limited period of time and only by request.

Google will be able to help you recover a deleted file for a limited time, but after the file has been deleted from Google’s systems, the files are gone forever.

Source (under Recover a deleted file).

However, there are some scripts that can do that. See this question for more information.

  • Isn't the "limited time recoverable" in your second source talking about cases when we manually delete the Trash? If we ensure that we do not manually delete the Trash, can we count (guaranteed) on it to be recoverable in the future months/years?
    – Pacerier
    Commented Aug 27, 2014 at 7:13
  • 1
    The first sentence in the help page answers this question pretty clear, I think: “Anything you remove from Google Drive will be in your Trash until you permanently delete the files or restore them.”
    – Alex
    Commented Aug 27, 2014 at 9:18

As of October 2020, Google Drive trash will be automatically deleted after 30 days https://gsuiteupdates.googleblog.com/2020/09/drive-trash-auto-delete-30-days.html.


You can write a script with AutoIt to open Google Drive (Log in if necessary) and empty the trash all automatically. I have done this for myself, and set it up in Tasks to run every day.


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