Record Retention Recommendations

Business documents are an important history of your businesses’ transactions with customers, vendors, creditors, and employees. These records should be maintained and available to resolve questions that may arise in the future.

Your business records should be easily accessible to authorized personnel in your business. Your business records should be maintained in accordance with the below recommended periods. Certain circumstances involving pending or potential litigation may require an extention of time for record retention. Your legal counsel should be consulted prior to discarding documents that may be subject to an extended retention period.

Special retention requirements may apply to documents or information maintained on computer systems. The Internal Revenue Service has special computer retrieval requirements when business records are maintained on a computerized system. You should consult with your tax adviser reguarding any applicable IRS requirements.

Type of Record Retention Period Type of Record Retention Period
Accident reports & claims 7 years Accounts payable ledgers 7 years
Accounts recievable ledger 7 years Audit reports Permanent
Bank reconciliations 1 year Bank statements 7 years
Canceled checks- important Permanent Canceled checks- other 7 years
Capital stock and bond records Permanent Cash books Permanent
Charts of accounts Permanent Contracts & leases-expired 7 years
Contracts & leases in effect Permanent Correspondence-Customers & vendors 1 year
Correspondence-general 3 years Correspondence-legal Permanent
Deeds, mortgages and bills of sale Permanent Depreciation schedules Permanent
Duplicate deposit slips 3 years Employee personnel records after termination 3 years
Employee benefit plan records 7 years Employment applications 3 years
Expense analysis & distribution schedules 7 years Financial statements-year end Permanent
Financial statements-other 7 years General ledgers & trial balances-year end Permanent
Inherited property records & valuations Permanent Insurance policies-expired 3 years
Insurance records Permanent Insurance audit reports Permanent
Internal reports 3 years Inventory records 7 years
Invoices to customers 7 years Invoices from vendors 7 years
Journals Permanent Low-income housing records 7 years
Minute books of directors & stockholders Permanent Notes receivable ledgers 7 years
Option records 7 years Payroll records 7 years
Petty cash vouchers 3 years Physical inventory tags 3 years
Property appraisals Permanent Property records Permanent
Purchase orders 7 years Receiving sheets 3 years
Requisitions 1 year Sales records 7 years
Savings bond records-employees 3 years Scrap & salvage records 7 years
Stock room withdrawal forms 1 year Subsidiary ledgers 7 years
Tax returns, worksheets & revenue agents’ reports Permanent Time books 7 years
Trade mark regisrations Permanent Voucher registers 7 years