SAMPLE DOCUMENT RETENTION AND DESTRUCTION POLICY
AS OF DECEMBER 1, 2009
NOTE ON THE SCOPE OF THIS MATERIAL
This material is designed to provide general guidance about an aspect of nonprofit corporate governance in the specific and limited context of the governance questions contained in the new IRS Form 990 (published by the IRS in 2008 and applicable to 990 filers based on a 2009-2011 filing year phase-in period depending on the size of the nonprofit). It is intended to provide some general guidance on the establishment of processes and/or policies to address a specific governance question in the Form. The subject matter of that question implicates a broad array of legal ...view middle of the document...
A customized approach, with outside professional advice, is recommended. Accordingly, this material is intended as general information for legal practitioners advising nonprofit organizations as to their governance and does not constitute legal advice for any particular nonprofit organization. For more information, see the related Form 990 Policy Series Memorandum at: http://www.publiccounsel.org/tools/assets/files/DocMemo.pdf.
Although the subject matter of this material may have relevance to nonprofit organizations that are not required to file informational tax returns with the IRS or are permitted to file on an IRS form other than Form 990, the focus of this material is 990 filers. While this material is meant to apply to Form 990 filers who are exempt under Section 501(c) of the Internal Revenue Code, certain portions of this material may be applicable only to Section 501(c)(3) organizations. In addition, although this material may be of assistance with respect to nonprofit organizations that are not subject to oversight under California law, there may be portions of this material that are relevant only to nonprofits organized under, or (by reason of their California-related activities) otherwise subject to, California law.
The reader has permission to copy, modify and otherwise use this policy for the reader's or his or her client's use. All other rights are reserved by the copyright holder.
DOCUMENT RETENTION AND DESTRUCTION POLICY
1. Policy and Purposes
This Policy represents the policy of ____________ (the “organization”) with respect to the retention and destruction of documents and other records, both in hard copy and electronic media (which may merely be referred to as “documents” in this Policy). Purposes of the Policy include (a) retention and maintenance of documents necessary for the proper functioning of the organization as well as to comply with applicable legal requirements; (b) destruction of documents which no longer need to be retained; and (c) guidance for the Board of Directors, officers, staff and other constituencies with respect to their responsibilities concerning document retention and destruction. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the organization reserves the right to revise or revoke this Policy at any time.
2.1 Responsibilities of the Administrator. The organization’s _________ [CEO, President, Executive Vice President, Vice President for___, etc.] shall be the administrator (“Administrator”) in charge of the administration of this Policy. The Administrator’s responsibilities shall include supervising and coordinating the retention and destruction of documents pursuant to this Policy and particularly the Document Retention Schedule included below. The Administrator shall also be responsible for documenting the actions taken to maintain and/or destroy organization documents and retaining such documentation. The Administrator may also modify the...