RECORD RETENTION LIST

      HOW LONG IS LONG ENOUGH?

 

Questions often arise as to how many years records and paperwork should be retained before disposing of them. Below is a general outline of how long you should hold certain items.

 

CASH RECORDS:

 

Bank Statements - 5 Years

Duplicate Deposit Slips - 3 Years

Bank Reconciliations - 3 Years

Canceled Checks - 5 Years

Drafts Paid - 3 Years

 

ACCOUNTS RECEIVABLE RECORDS:

 

Accounts Receivable Subsidiary Ledger Sheets (If Paid) - 2 Years

Records and reports regarding uncollectible accounts - 10 Years

 

ACCOUNTS PAYABLE RECORDS:

 

Vendors’ invoices (except those supporting major fixed asset additions) - 3 Years

Vendors’ invoices supporting major fixed asset additions - 3 Years after disposed of

Correspondence with vendors - Optional

 

SALES RECORDS:

 

Cash receipts journal or sales journal - 5 Years

Sales invoices - 5 Years

Sales correspondence - 3 Years

Sales tax returns - 5 Years

 

DISBURSEMENTS RECORDS:

 

Cash disbursements journal or purchase journal - 5 Years

Expense account analysis - 3 Years

Employee travel expense reports - 3 Years

 

PAYROLL RECORDS:

 

Payroll tax returns - 5 Years

Individual employee earnings’ records - 6 Years

Time cards and time sheets - 3 Years

Payroll journals - 5 Years

 

GENERAL LEDGER: Permanent

 

FINANCIAL STATEMENTS:

 

Year end audit reports - Permanent

Monthly statements and other internal financial reports - 3 Years

 

CORPORATE RECORDS:

 

Certificate of incorporation - Permanent

Charter and bylaws - Permanent

Stockholders’ records - Permanent

Minutes - Permanent

 

 

FEDERAL AND STATE INCOME TAX RETURNS: Permanent

 

INVENTORIES:

 

Year end listings, cost records, etc. - 3 Years

 

RETIREMENT PLANS:

 

Participants’ accounts - Permanent

General ledgers and financial statements - Permanent

Correspondence, etc. - 5 Years

IRS approval letter - Permanent

 

OTHER RECORDS:

 

Deeds - Permanent

Contracts, agreements and leases - 20 Years after termination

Canceled notes - 6 Years after cancellation

Law correspondence - 20 Years

Fixed asset records - Permanent