DROP RULE (Transact-SQL)

Applies to: SQL Server Azure SQL Managed Instance

Removes one or more user-defined rules from the current database.


DROP RULE will be removed in the next version of Microsoft SQL Server. Do not use DROP RULE in new development work, and plan to modify applications that currently use them. Instead, use CHECK constraints that you can create by using the CHECK keyword of CREATE TABLE or ALTER TABLE. For more information, see Unique Constraints and Check Constraints.

Transact-SQL syntax conventions


DROP RULE [ IF EXISTS ] { [ schema_name . ] rule_name } [ ,...n ] [ ; ]  


To view Transact-SQL syntax for SQL Server 2014 and earlier, see Previous versions documentation.


Applies to: SQL Server ( SQL Server 2016 (13.x) through current version).

Conditionally drops the rule only if it already exists.

Is the name of the schema to which the rule belongs.

Is the rule to be removed. Rule names must comply with the rules for identifiers. Specifying the rule schema name is optional.


To drop a rule, first unbind it if the rule is currently bound to a column or to an alias data type. To unbind the rule, use sp_unbindrule. If the rule is bound when you try to drop it, an error message is displayed and the DROP RULE statement is canceled.

After a rule is dropped, new data entered into the columns previously governed by the rule is entered without the constraints of the rule. Existing data is not affected in any way.

The DROP RULE statement does not apply to CHECK constraints. For more information about dropping CHECK constraints, see ALTER TABLE (Transact-SQL).


To execute DROP RULE, at a minimum, a user must have ALTER permission on the schema to which the rule belongs.


The following example unbinds and then drops the rule named VendorID_rule.

sp_unbindrule 'Production.ProductVendor.VendorID'  
DROP RULE VendorID_rule  

See Also

sp_bindrule (Transact-SQL)
sp_help (Transact-SQL)
sp_helptext (Transact-SQL)
sp_unbindrule (Transact-SQL)
USE (Transact-SQL)