Record Retention and Destruction Policy


Document Destruction

The Document Retention and Destruction Policy identifies the record retention responsibilities of staff, volunteers, members of the board of directors, and outsiders for maintaining and documenting the storage and destruction of the organization’s documents and records.

The organization’s staff, volunteers, members of the board of directors, committee members and outsiders (independent contractors via agreements with them) are required to honor the following rules:

  1. Paper or electronic documents indicated under the terms for retention in the following section will be transferred and maintained by Renee L Rose Principal;
  2. All other paper documents will be destroyed after three years;
  3. All other electronic documents will be deleted from all individual computers, data bases, networks, and back-up storage after three years;
  4. No paper or electronic documents will be destroyed or deleted if pertinent to any ongoing or anticipated government investigation or proceeding or private litigation; and
  5. No paper or electronic documents will be destroyed or deleted as required to comply with government auditing standards (Single Audit Act).

Record Retention

The following table* indicates the minimum requirements  for the document retention policy.

Type of Document Minimum Requirement
Accounts payable ledgers and schedules 7 years
Audit reports Permanently
Bank reconciliations 2 years
Bank statements 3 years
Checks (for important payments and purchases) Permanently
Contracts, mortgages, notes, and leases (expired) 7 years
Contracts (still in effect) Contract period
Correspondence (general) 2 years
Correspondence (legal and important matters) Permanently
Correspondence (with customers and vendors) 2 years
Deeds, mortgages, and bills of sale Permanently
Depreciation schedules Permanently
Duplicate deposit slips 2 years
Employment applications 3 years
Expense analyses/expense distribution schedules 7 years
Year-end financial statements Permanently
Insurance records, current accident reports, claims, policies, and so on (active and expired) Permanently
Internal audit reports 3 years
Inventory records for products, materials, and supplies 3 years
Invoices (to customers, from vendors) 7 years
Minute books, bylaws, and charter Permanently
Patents and related papers Permanently
Payroll records and summaries 7 years
Personnel files (terminated employees) 7 years
Retirement and pension records Permanently
Tax returns and worksheets Permanently
Timesheets 7 years
Trademark registrations and copyrights Permanently
Withholding tax statements 7 years

Resources

  •           National Council of Nonprofits www.councilofnonprofits.org
  •           BoardSource Record Retention and Document Destruction Policy—Download 4 Samples (E-Policy Sampler) www.boardsource.org/Bookstore.asp?Type=epolicy&Item=1071
  •           Independent Sector www.independentsector.org/issues/sarbanesoxley.html
  •           AICPA Management of an Accounting Handbook—2003 and IRS Appendix Document www.cpa2biz.com/AST/Main/CPA2BIZ_Primary/PracticeManagement/PracticeAdministration/ PRDOVR~PC-090407/PC-090407.jsp
  •           Guide to Record Retention Requirements in the Code of Federal Regulations: Contact the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C. 20402-9325 or from CCH, Inc. at www.onlinestore.cch.com