Records retention: How long should you keep each document?
With the mountain of records—paper and electronic—produced by the average employer, it’s tempting to have a big spring cleaning. But if you destroy a document too soon, you may be throwing away a legal defense. If you try to keep everything, you may be violating federal rules on the “reasonable” disposal of sensitive documents.
Here are suggested retention periods for 100 different business records. Use these as a guide, not as an executioner. You must retain records longer if litigation, a government investigation or an audit seems likely. Also, note that some states require longer retention records for certain records. (P = permanent)
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