When an application performs a hard delete, then the data is removed from the database and it can never be accessed again. MET/TEAM does not do that. Instead, it performs a soft delete, which means the record is only "marked" as deleted.
Most records in MET/TEAM have two fields to determine their visibility: lActive and lDeleted. If a record is inactivated, then the lActive field is set to 0 (false). An inactive record will not be visible or searchable unless its associated Find Screen's "Show Inactive" button is set. If a record is deleted, the lDeleted field is set to -1 (true). In this case, it can never be accessed through the MET/TEAM UI.
The benefit of soft deletes is that data is never permanently gone and it is usually still possible to recover them.
You must always be cognizant of lActive and lDeleted when writing data checks or reports, otherwise you may see unwanted data. Be sure to include the following snippet in your queries to filter out inactive/deleted data:
[Table].lActive <> 0 AND
[Table].lDeleted = 0