Records Document Retention Policy

I. Introduction

Record retention guidelines help an organization (1) to adequately protect and maintain necessary records and information, and (2) to properly discard records and information that are no longer needed or are of no value. The following guidelines provide recommendations for the disposition of records and information used in the administration and management of Maryville University’s (“University”) programs, departments, business and activities. Following the designated expiration of their retention period, records should be disposed of appropriately.

II. Administration & Responsibility

Each office/department is in charge of implementing the processes and procedures outlined in these guidelines, as well as ongoing compliance. The office/department is authorized to modify these guidelines to ensure legal compliance and inclusion of appropriate record categories. All members of the University community should adhere to these guidelines. Questions concerning records retention issues may be directed to office/department.

III. Form of Records

These guidelines are “media neutral,” meaning that the type of medium with which a record is created has no bearing on retention time requirements. These guidelines do not obligate an office to create records that did not exist previously.

IV. Records in Multiple Categories

Some records may fall within two categories. When that is the case, apply the longest applicable retention period.

V. Electronic Back-Up

It is the responsibility of each Department to understand the University’s procedures regarding back-up of electronic information and data and to ensure that these guidelines are applied with respect to data kept and/or backed up on electronic servers. [It should be noted that data on individual users’ computers is/is not backed up; each user is responsible for ensuring appropriate application of these guidelines as to his or her individual computer.]

VI. Confidential Records

Confidential records must be disposed of according to their retention periods in a manner that preserves their confidentiality (e.g., by shredding).

VII. Investigation and Litigation Holds

DO NOT dispose of any records or information if an investigation, legal action or proceeding, audit, program review, or other accreditation review is forthcoming or in progress. A University employee who becomes aware of the following shall notify the office/department: that the University has been served with a subpoena or request for documents, that there is a governmental investigation or audit concerning the University, or that there is forthcoming litigation against or concerning the University. The office/department shall take necessary steps to inform personnel of suspension in disposal of records and information as necessary. Disposal of any related records and information shall be suspended until the office/department, with the advice of counsel, determines otherwise.

VIII. Records Retention Schedule


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