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Records Management, Archiving and Destruction of Records

Overview of Records Management

U of T File Plan

Archival Records

Overview of Records Management

Records Management is the systematic control of all records, regardless of media or format, from their initial creation to final disposition, and the development and application of systematic standards to recorded information.

The University launched a records management program in 1989:

  • to promote systematic control of University corporate records in accordance with legal statutes and University policy, and
  • to provide guidance to administrative and academic units on management of their records.

Since that time, the University of Toronto Archives & Records and Management Services (UTARMS) has developed detailed University-wide retention and disposition schedules, and maintains the U of T File Plan to aid control and disposition of University administrative records.

This section covers the key areas of records management, archiving and the destruction of records:

U of T File Plan

With regards to financial records, there are statutory requirements with respect to records and document retention. The department (or division) is responsible for retention and orderly and safe storage of the records in its custody. For detailed information on the retention periods of specific documents, refer to the U of T File Plan. If your department requires assistance in developing its own records retention plan, contact UTARMS for further information.

In most cases, the retention period for departmental financial records is the current fiscal year, plus six additional fiscal years. For information on records retention, refer to the U of T File Plan. For detailed information of retention periods for specific financial documents, refer to the Finance section – Primary Numbers 700-799 of the File Plan.

It is important that all departments follow the U of T File Plan. This includes the following:

  • keeping active records in files that provide easy retrieval;
  • moving semi-active files to secured on-site storage or an off-site storage facility (to be determined by the individual unit), and
  • dispose of the records once the semi-active storage period is complete as indicated in the U of T File Plan.

Archival Records

The Presidential Regulations for the Management of Archives and Records confirm the role of the University Archives as the repository for all records of archival value generated by and relating to the history of the University of Toronto.

Consult before record destruction
When records are no longer needed by an office, department or division it must consult the University Archives before any records are destroyed. Records Archivists will appraise the unit’s inactive records, thereby ensuring that all records of continuing value to the University will be preserved. All such decisions are made in full consultation with the offices that created the records.

The records of the University of Toronto are a vital information resource essential to our current and future operation. The effective management of the records created by every academic and administrative office will ensure that important information is available when needed and that historically valuable records are preserved for posterity.

For more information visit:  utarms.library.utoronto.ca/about/staff-directory

Last Revision: December 17, 2020