Business Record Retention Policy

This policy was approved by the Vice President for Finance and Administration on June 24, 1999. It is the university's policy regarding the retention and disposal of all business records and other records maintained within the Finance and Administration division of the university. The purpose of this policy is to ensure that necessary records and documents are adequately protected and maintained and to ensure that records that are no longer needed or of no value are discarded at the appropriate time.

Each department head will prepare a listing of major documentation used and maintained by the department and will compare it to the documents listed in the Record Retention Policy. In addition, each department head periodically will review currently-used records and forms to determine whether these records and forms are adequate and appropriate for each department's requirements. Each department head will refer to the university's Educational Records Policy to ensure departmental compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), also know as the "Buckley Amendment."

Each department head will periodically review the Record Retention Policy to determine any special circumstances that necessitate changes in the retention periods. Requests for changes in retention periods or deviations from specified retention periods should be made to the Vice President for Finance and Administration, and may be implemented only after approval by counsel.

In the event of a governmental audit, investigation, or pending litigation, record disposal may be suspended at the direction of the Vice President for Finance and Administration. In addition, the Vice President for Finance and Administration should be informed of any situation that might give rise to legal action as soon as the situation becomes apparent.

Retention Periods

  • ACT = while active or employed
  • ENR = while enrolled
  • LIFE = life of the affected employee
  • PERM = permanent
  • FISOP = June 30 of the year the related FISOP/FISAP was submitted

The retention schedule below indicates the minimum (MIN) retention period per law/regulation of which we are aware. Please note that in many cases the university has defined its retention period (UPS) in excess of a minimum requirement. Puget Sound personnel should follow the UPS retention period.

Document

Retention Period

 

MIN

UPS

Institutional & Legal Records

 

 

Articles of Incorporation

PERM

same

Charter

PERM

same

By-Laws

PERM

same

Minutes of Trustee Meetings

PERM

same

Minutes of Trustee Committee Meetings

PERM

same

Licenses

ACT

same

Expired Licenses

6 years

same

Deeds and Titles

PERM

same

Attorney Opinion Letters (Property)

ACT + 4 years

same

Leases

ACT + 6 years

same

Policy Statements

10 years

same

Campus Crime Reports (Annual)

4 years

10 years

Campus Crime Reports (Interim)

2 years

same

Contracts and Agreements

ACT + 6 years

same

Patent and Trademark Records

ACT + 6 years

same

Employee Directories (Maintained by Mail Services Dept.)

5 years

PERM

     

 Individual Student Records

 

 

Name Change Authorization

ENR + 6 years

same

Tuition & Fee Charges (In Student A/R files)

ENR + 6 years

same

 

 

 

Financial Aid Records

 

 

Student Files

 

 

Applications

5 years

same

Financial Aid Awards including Federal or State Aid

ENR + 6 years

same

Financial Aid Awards consisting of only UPS sponsored Aid

 

ACT +1

Financial Aid Transcripts

ENR + 6 years

same

Lenders Name and Address

ENR + 6 years

same

FFEL Student or Parent Borrowers Records

ENR + 3 years

same

Alaska State Loan Records

5 years

same

Perkins Promissory Notes (Cancellations due to Bankruptcy Discharge or Permanent Disability)

PERM

same

Perkins Promissory Notes (Paid-in-full)

ACT + 3 years

same

Repayment History

ACT + 5 years

same

Student Employment

 

 

Student Employment Agreements

6 years

FISOP + 5

Student Employment Job Descriptions

6 years

FISOP + 5

Timesheets

6 years

FISOP + 5

Employment Eligibility Verification (I9 Form)

the later of ACT + 1 year OR 3 years after hired

same

FAO Departmental Reports and Records

 

 

Administrative records related to Washington State Aid (Including WSNG, SWS manuals & Unit Record data)

 

6 years

Administrative records for Perkins, FWS, FSEOG & Pell

Award year + 3 yrs

same

FFEL Institution Participation Records

Award year + 3 yrs

same

FISOP/FISAP

FISOP + 3 years

same

DOE Cash/GAPS Reports & Reconciliations

Award year + 3 yrs

same

IPEDS

3 years

same

IPEDS (if charge of discrimination filed by EEOC)

until disposition of charge/claim

same

 

 

 

 Employment Applications/Listings

 

 

Job Announcements and Advertisements

1 year

same

Individual Applicants Who Are Not Hired

 

 

Employment Applications

1 year

same

Background Investigation Results

1 year

same

Resumes

1 year

same

Letters of Recommendation

1 year

same

Individual Applicants Who Are Hires

 

 

Employment Applications

ACT + 1 year

PERM

Background Investigation Results

ACT + 1 year

PERM

Resumes

ACT + 1 year

PERM

Medical Examinations

ACT + 1 year

PERM

Letters of Recommendation

ACT + 6 years

PERM

 

 

 

 Payroll Records

 

 

General Information

 

 

Wage Rate Tables

3 years

same

Cost of Living Tables

1 year

same

Individual Employee Files

 

 

Wage or Salary History

6 years

same

Salary or Current Rate of Pay

6 years

same

Payroll Deductions

6 years

same

Time Cards or Sheets (except those that support use of tax-exempt bond proceeds; see Capital Property Records section)

5 years

same

W-2 Form

6 years

same

W-4 Form

6 years

same

Garnishments

ACT

same

Payroll Register (except those that support use of tax-exempt bond proceeds; see Capital Property Records section)

6 years

7 years

Washington State Employment Security Form 5208

4 years

ACT + 4

Notices of Employment Security Claims

4 years

same

Form 941

4 years

same

Form 945

4 years

same

 

 

 

 Personnel Files

 

 

Individual Employee Files

 

 

Employment Application or Resume

ACT

PERM

Employment History

ACT

same

Beneficiary Designation

ACT

same

Emergency Contacts

ACT

same

Medical Records

ACT

same

Promotions

ACT

same

Attendance Records

3 years

same

Employee Evaluations

3 years

same

Transfers

3 years

same

Personnel Actions

3 years

same

Disciplinary Warnings and Actions

3 years

same

Layoff or Termination

3 years

same

Employment Eligibility Verification (I9 Form)

the later of ACT + 1 year or 3 years after hired

ACT + 3 years

General Files

 

 

EEO-6 Reports (Now part of IPEDS)

3 years

same

Superseded Employee Manuals

10 years

same

Superseded Job Descriptions

10 years

same

 

 

 

 Employee Medical, Health, & Safety Records

 

 

Accident Reports

6 years

10 years

Employee Exposure Records

30 years

same

Exposed Employee Medical Records

30 years

same

Safety Records

6 years

10 years

Employee Medical Complaints

6 years

10 years

Employee Injury Records

6 years

10 years

 

 

 

 Benefit Records

 

 

Individual Employee Files

LIFE

same

Education Assistance

LIFE

same

Vesting

6 years

same

Sick Leave Benefits

LIFE

same

Retirement Benefits Accrued

LIFE

same

403B Benefits Accrued

LIFE

same

Disability Records

LIFE

same

General Files

 

 

Actuarial Records

6 years

same

Incentive Plans (after expiration)

6 years

same

Pension Plans (after expiration)

6 years

same

Retirement Plans (after expiration)

6 years

same

 

 

 

Federal Tax Records

 

 

Form 990 and Support

3 years

PERM

Form 990-T and Support

3 years

PERM

Unitrust Tax Returns and Support

3 years

7 years

 

 

 

 State & Local Tax Records

 

 

City & State Excise Tax Reports (Includes support documentation)

5 years

5 years

Unclaimed Property Filings (Includes support documentation)

6 years 6 years

 

 

 

Revenue Records

 

 

Accounts Receivable (Includes Deposit and NCT Summaries)

6 years

7 years

Accounts Receivable Subsidiary Ledgers

6 years

7 years

A/R Fiscal Year End Report

 

7 years

Receipts (for all gifts and sales from all sources on campus - Retained by the Department which effected the sale/gift)

6 years

7 years

Each Department which processes Recharge or Cash Sales/Gift transactions must keep a record/ledger of all transactions

ACT + 5 years

7 years

Uncollected Accounts (Includes Charge Off files)

ACT + 6 years

PERM

 

 

 

 Accounts Payable Records
(Maintained in the AP Office)

 

 

Accounts Payable Vendor Files

 

 

Processed/Paid Purchase Orders (except those that support use of tax-exempt bond proceeds; see Capital Property Records section)

5 years

7 years

Original Invoices (Includes those records maintained by the Bookstore, Dining Services & HR) (except those that support use of tax-exempt bond proceeds; see Capital Property Records section)

5 years

7 years

Expense Reports

5 years

7 years

Accounts Payable Subsidiary Reports

5 years

7 years

Accounts Payable Post Reports

5 years

7 years

Accounts Payable Check Prep Reports

 

until the Annual Audit is completed

1099 and 1042 Reports

 

7 years

A/P Check Registers

5 years

7 years

 

 

 

Bank Records

 

 

Wire Transfer Records (Kept in the JV files)

5 years

7 years

Bank Statements

5 years

7 years

Deposit Records

 

7 years

Bank Reconciliations & Support

 

7 years

Canceled Checks

 

7 years

 

 

 

Grant & Gift Records

 

 

Government Grant Files

ACT + 3 years

same

Private Grant Files

 

ACT + 6 years

Deeds and Titles for Donated Real Property subsequently sold

 

PERM

Life Income Agreements (May need to retain as Endowment records)

 

ACT + 6 years

 

 

 

Endowment Records (and other permanently restricted net asset records)

 

PERM

 

 

 

Capital Property Records

 

 

Property Records

ACT + 5 years

PERM

Inventory

ACT + 5 years

7 years

Depreciation Schedules

ACT + 5 years

PERM

Mortgage, Bonds and Other Long-Term Debt Agreements and Amortization Schedules

ACT + 5 years

PERM

Disbursement (payroll & accounts payable) records that support use of tax-exempt bond proceeds

Life of bonds   + 6 years

same

Property Improvement Records

ACT + 5 years

PERM

Sales

5 years

same

Property Tax Exemption Records

 

PERM

 

 

 

Financial Records

 

 

Description of Accounting System

ACT

same

General Ledgers and Operating Ledgers

ACT + 5 years

PERM

Subsidiary Ledgers

ACT + 5 years

7 years

Journal Vouchers and backup (including budget entries)

 

7 years

Account Reconciliations

 

7 years

Annual Financial Report (audited)

ACT + 5 years

PERM

Audit Reports and Workpapers in support of the Annual Financial Report

ACT + 5 years

7 years

Unclaimed Property Records

 

PERM

 

 

 

Budget Records
(Maintained by Accounting & Budget Services)

 

 

Budget Task Force Records (and support)

 

7 years

Budget Entries (and support)

 

7 years

Budget Variance Reports (and support)

 

7 years

 

 

 

 Facilities Records

 

 

Building Permits

ACT + 5 years

same

Building Plans and Specifications

PERM

same

Office Layouts

ACT

same

Zoning Permits

ACT

same

Operating Permits

ACT

same

Maintenance Records

ACT

same

Motor Vehicle Records

ACT

same

Air or Water Waste Emissions

3 years

same

Hazardous Chemical Waste Records

5 years

same

Laboratory Practices

ACT

same

 

 

 

Litigation Records

 

 

Claims

ACT

same

Court Documents and Records

ACT

same

Deposition Transcripts

ACT

same

Discovery Materials

ACT

same

Litigation Files

ACT + 2 years

same

 

 

 

Insurance Records

 

 

Property Insurance Policies

 

10 years

Liability Insurance Policies

 

PERM

Insurance Claim Documents

 

10 years