How long do I need to keep records?

There is no standard minimum period for which records need to be kept. A common misconception is that records need to be kept for 7 years, but this is not the case.   The minimum retention period depends on what activities of the University the records document. This can range from a few months through to permanent status.

The retention period is determined by the Retention and Disposal Schedules issued by Queensland State Archives.

UQ is subject to two Retention and Disposal Schedules:

General Retention and Disposal Schedule

University Sector Retention and Disposal Schedule

Use the index or PDF search function(Ctrl F) to locate the type of record and there should be a corresponding retention.  You can keep records beyond this retention, but you can’t destroy them beforehand.

Example:

How long do I need to keep timesheets?

General Retention and Disposal Schedule (As of 1 September 2016)

Disposal Code is 1245

Attendance - Records that document the attendance of employees.

Retain for 7 years after last business action.

Watch Video – How to Use a Retention Schedule

Watch Video – Destroying Records
 

How to Dispose of records

Some records are permanent but most are temporary and can be destroyed at a later date.  Retention Schedules provide the minimum length of time different records need to be kept.  When you are ready to dispose of records please follow this Procedure. (PPL)

Disposal Forms

To help you dispose of common administrative records RAMS has prepopulated Disposal forms which you can download below.
These have a list of records including:  finance, grants, timesheets, R&D forms and contracts with the disposal codes and dates completed.
Please use these to gain approval before disposing of both hard copy and electronic records.

Can I destroy records that have been scanned/digitised?

Unfortunately you cannot throw away records before the stipulated retention period even if you have digitised or scanned them.  Scanned copies may be useful for reference purposes, or allow you to save room in your office by storing hardcopy records off-site, but you must still treat the hardcopies as official public records. 

RAMS currently has permission to destroy hardcopies of some documents with temporary retentions but only after they have been registered into TRIM and quality checked.