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Financial Records

When and How To Dispose of Financial Records

Business financial records include any corporate accounts statements, audits, forms and activity related to these procedures. Some of these documents may overlap with categories found in other sections within this guide.

Suggested Retention Duration for Select Financial Records

Document TypeSuggested Minimum Retention
Accounts receivable, accounts payable ledgers and schedules7 years
Audit reportsPermanently
Bank statements, electronic funds transfer documents, deposit records, cancelled checks7 years
Chart of accountsPermanently
Checks for large or crucial purchasesPermanently
Correspondence with vendors and customers2 years
Deeds, bills of sale, mortgages for held assetsPermanently
Depreciation schedules and reportsPermanently
Donations7 years
Year-end financial statementsPermanently
Garnishments7 years
General business/finance ledgers, year-end trial balancePermanently
Government grants (funded)7 years after final closure
Insurance policies3 years after expiration
Insurance records such as claims, accident reports, settlementsPermanently
Internal audit reports3 years
Invoices to customers or from vendors7 years
Inventory records7 years
Loan documentationPermanently
Patents, copyrights, trademarks and related documentationPermanently
Petty cash vouchers3 years
Property/asset appraisalsPermanently until sale
Property blueprints and utility diagramsPermanently until sale
Purchase orders7 years
Sales records7 years
Corporate tax returns and worksheetsPermanently
Timekeeping sheets, books, cards, etc.7 years
Receipts and vouchers of payment to employees or vendors7 years
Payroll tax withholding statements7 years
Documentation of workers compensation claims10 years after final settlement

Disposing of Financial Records Properly

Once the decided retention duration has passed according to your retention schedule, organizations are strongly recommended to completely destroy all financial documentation through a secure, transparent process.

This process will be identical to the recommended guidelines for secure document destruction found on the How to Dispose of Contracts page.

Different processes are outlined in paper and digital materials.

Other Documents

A similar table will be provided in the corresponding sections for:

Important note: This list is only meant as a general guideline, not a substitute for legal advice. Consult your CPA or a New York business attorney for specific advice on best practices and legal compliance requirements.

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