Retention Schedules

Effective January 1, 2023, the retention schedules the University is authorized to use to determine the minimum retention requirements of its official records include the following: (1) The State of Arizona’s set of General Retention Schedules, and (2) the new state-approved University of Arizona Custom Retention Schedule dated 1/1/2023. All previous versions of University retention schedules are no longer in use and are under review for retirement.

The General Retention Schedules contain record series options that apply to all state agencies; the Custom Retention Schedule contains record series options that are unique to the University.

To locate the record series option that corresponds with your record type, start by performing key one-word searches using root words that describe the record's primary function or purpose. If necessary, try a few different keywords to improve the quality of your search results.

As a matter of practicality, search the custom schedule first. The record series options found on the custom schedule take precedence over those found on the general schedules.

If the search results provide you with multiple record series options, choose the one that most closely aligns with your record type. In the event two or more record series options are equally sufficient, choose the one with the retention period that most closely aligns with your unit's business needs and expectations.

Contact Records & Archives if you need assistance with this process. Provide the record's name along with a brief description of the record's function and purpose (how and why) with your inquiry.

Notes and Reminders

Working with Outside Entities

When University units engage in activities with outside entities, such as the federal government, grant-giving organizations, industry governing bodies, etc., there is a possibility these entities may impose their own records retention requirements that exceed the minimum requirements found on the University’s approved retention schedules. In these cases, the University units working with these entities are responsible for knowing and understanding the additional retention requirements, communicating them to all concerned parties, and ensuring they are followed. Contact Records & Archives for assistance with interpreting or adhering to any additional retention requirements that may be encountered.

Retention Time Periods

A record’s retention time period begins according to instructions found on the appropriate retention schedule in the Retention Remarks column in conjunction with a record’s creation or receipt date. If no applicable information is provided, the default instruction is “after created or received.” In order to be eligible for retention storage, a record must be able to begin serving its retention time period so an accurate retention completion date can be calculated.

Retention Schedule Maintenance

The general retention schedules are managed by the state, and they will be updated as changes to state retention requirements go into effect. The custom retention schedule is managed by Records & Archives, and it will be updated as needed as more unique record types are identified for inclusion.