Failure of Success Criteria 2.1.1, 2.4.7, and 3.2.1 due to using script to remove focus when focus is received

Important Information about Techniques

See Understanding Techniques for WCAG Success Criteria for important information about the usage of these informative techniques and how they relate to the normative WCAG 2.1 success criteria. The Applicability section explains the scope of the technique, and the presence of techniques for a specific technology does not imply that the technology can be used in all situations to create content that meets WCAG 2.1.


Applies to all content that supports script.

User Agent and Assistive Technology Support Notes

This technique relates to:


Content that normally receives focus when the content is accessed by keyboard may have this focus removed by scripting. This is sometimes done when designer considers the system focus indicator to be unsightly. However, the system focus indicator is an important part of accessibility for keyboard users. In addition, this practice removes focus from the content entirely, which means that the content can only be operated by a pointing device such as a mouse.


Example 1

<input type="submit" onFocus="this.blur();"> 

Example 2

<a onFocus="this.blur()" href="Page.html"><img src="myImage.gif"></a> 

Example 3

<a href="link.html" onfocus="if(this.blur)this.blur();">Link Phrase</a> 



  1. Use the keyboard to verify that you can get to all interactive elements using the keyboard.
  2. Check that when focus is placed on each element, focus remains there until user moves it.

Expected Results

  • If #2 is false then this failure condition applies and content fails the Success Criterion.