The decision appeared to cover Lula, whose attorneys said they would immediately request his release.
The ruling also covers others convicted in cases arising from the so-called 'Lava Jato' ("Car Wash") investigation, which has ensnared dozens of top politicians and business leaders in Latin America's largest nation. They will now be able to seek release.
Prosecutors from the Lava Jato probe said in a statement the top court's decision "goes against the sentiment of repudiating impunity and the fight against corruption."
The former president was convicted of corruption and money-laundering in connection with the purchase of a beachfront apartment in the seaside city of Guaruja, in São Paulo state. Prosecutors successfully argued the apartment was promised as a kickback from a construction company. Its former CEO said the apartment was reserved for Lula.
The 3,197-square-foot (297-square-metre) apartment in the Solaris complex faces Asturias Beach, one of the busiest in Guaruja.
Lula appealed his conviction but it was upheld last year, and he was put behind bars in April 2018. Per a Supreme Court determination in 2016, criminals whose convictions were upheld on appeal could begin serving their sentences.
The former president is now appealing to higher courts. He maintains that he was framed by his political opponents.