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Record submitted for approval locked in Production but not in Sandbox

Knowledge Article Number 000187587
Description A record is submitted for approval in Production and is locked, whereas a record submitted for approval in Sandbox is not locked.  Sometimes this discrepancy on lock status of the record is observed. There is Identical configuration in both Sandbox and Production for an Approval Process, for a record that meets the Entry criteria.
The issue is with the Approval Process involved for the locked records and is due to the following reasons, say, in Production:
1.  When the approval process was created (in Production), the Record Editability setting was originally "Administrator Only". 
2. This process was activated and records were submitted to the process. 
3. Subsequently, the Record Editability setting in the process was changed to "Administrator OR Current Approver" 
In this scenario, any records which were submitted for approval while the process Record Editability was "Administrator Only", will still be editable only by an Administrator. 
4. Records submitted for approval *after* the Record Editability setting was changed will be editable by the Assigned/Current Approver as expected. 
5. If there is an older approval request where the assigned approver cannot edit the record, the record may be recalled from the approval process and resubmitted. Following this, the assigned approver will be able to edit the record. 
Any new records submitted to the approval process should not encounter this behavior.

Note:  This behavior can also be observed the other way round, i.e, records locked in Sandbox but not in Production, in which case the above analysis may be relevant.

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