Record Retention

January 17th, 2013

Out with the Old and in with The New . . .But What Should We Keep and What Can We Throw Away?

In today’s world, technology is constantly evolving, thus making keeping and storing personal and business documents, even more convenient and easy.  Though some still like to hold on to the hard copy that they have, such as a bill, bank statement, tax files, or other personal documents, others are now scanning and filing those documents onto their computers, instead of storing them in an actual folder, drawer, cabinet, etc. in their home or office.

With the retention time beginning when we file or receive the document, we only keep our hard documents for certain lengths of time.  But what about the electronic versions of these documents?  How long can we keep those?  Well, those still need to be kept  for the same time period as a hard documents hard file would be kept.  For examples of how long certain documents should be kept, whether they are hard files or electronic, see the short list below.

  • Bank statements – 3 years
  • Employment applications – 3 years
  • Invoices (to customers, from vendors) – 7 years
  • Payroll records & Summaries – 7 years
  • Personnel files (terminated) – 7 years
  • Time books/cards – 7 years
  • Vouchers for payments to vendors, employee, etc.(includes allowances & reimbursement of employees, officers, etc. for travel & entertainment expenses) – 7 years

Remember to always keep back up of your files, whether they are hard copies or electronic.  For a complete list of record retention periods, please call give us a call at our Goldsboro office at (919) 759-2303 or our Clayton Office at (919)553-4700.

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