University of Georgia Special Collections Libraries
University of Georgia Libraries

Retention Schedules

What are the retention schedules?

The schedules are guides to the types of documents your office might generate and the legal requirements for keeping or disposing of them. As an institution of the University System of Georgia, UGA employees are obliged to use the schedules approved by the Board of Regents at their October 2001 meeting.

Why must we use the schedules?

The Board of Regents has adopted the schedules to ensure that all University System organizations can meet the requirements of the Georgia Records Law and the Georgia Open Records Law. In addition, the rules of the schedules consider recommendations for good business practices of various professional organizations.

What can the schedules do for me?

In addition to providing legal protection for your operations, the schedules provide a scheme for the organization of your files so they can be retired in a systematic and orderly fashion, freeing up space.

Using their organizational scheme allows you to take full advantage of Records Center service, storing lesser used materials and retrieving items quickly when needed.

Use of the retention schedules can help you to decide which records are most important if you should ever be faced with recovery from a disaster, making quick choices about the items that need immediate salvage.

How do I read these schedules?

Like the old schedules, the new ones feature convenient citation codes and are divided into sections that reflect various record keeping situations. The new codes, however, differ from the old and are composed of a letter and a number. Because of this it may take a moment to adjust to the new system.

Fortunately the new retention schedules' site offers a search engine to help you select the standards that best suit your records. Once you enter the University System of Georgia's Records Management web site, click on the Records Retention Series Search link. This page will allow you to make a keyword search of either the whole set of retention schedules or a more specific subset of the retention schedule such as "Administration."

The search function will give you many different schedules for your one topic. This is because many records have different functions in different instances. For example, a check request that deals with reimbursement may have a shorter life span than one that deals with paying a company for their chemical supply so that a professor can finish her research.

We suggest that once you find the retention schedules you need, make a note of the future for when similar documents are to be stored.

Remember, if you have any questions please feel free to give us a call and we will be glad to help - 706-369-5926.