We have a custom list which contain 4 levels of approvals as follow:-

  1. Team Lead

  2. Manager

  3. Area Manager

  4. Senior Manager

and the item will have unique permission on each stage. for example when it is Assigned to the Area Manager >> only the related area manager can edit while others can read-only. and once the senior manager approve the item >> its status will be closed and will have read-only to all users.

now our list sooner or later will reach the 5,000 unique items limit mentioned on this link https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/office365/servicedescriptions/sharepoint-online-service-description/sharepoint-online-limits#unique-security-scopes-per-list-or-library .. Can anyone advice how we can handle this?


1 Answer 1


I've set up something before where documents that were in the approval process were in one library, where they had unique permissions, and then after receiving final approval (or final un-approval), they get moved to an "approved" library where permissions were set at the library level and the items were reset to inherit from the parent (library).

That way you can have items that are "in process" have unique permissions and not get close to the security scope limit, and once items are done and "archived" you can let them build up in numbers but revert to inheriting permissions, again avoiding the security scope limit.

  • ok i see,, but why to set a separate library we can create a folder and move the Closed (Final approved or unapporved) items to the folder. where the items inside the folder will inherit their permissions from the folder , so they will not be counted as items with unique permissionss.. will this work?
    – John John
    Commented Aug 15, 2022 at 22:58
  • 1
    Yes, that would probably work, I think. I had some additional requirements (there's actually more than just one final/approved library in my system), and it just seemed easier and safer to me to not have folders and set things up as separate libraries. Commented Aug 15, 2022 at 23:12

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.