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Reading the Records Retention Schedule (RRS)

TMU's Records Retention Schedule (RRS) defines the length of time different classes of University Records must be retained.   

The table below provides information on how the schedule is structured and descriptions for each column.  The description also includes standard terms used within the Schedule.     

Column Description
Records Code
  • Alpha-numeric identifier for Records Class
  • 3 letter Function Code followed by a dash followed by a 4 digit number incremented by 100 for each class
  • Often used as a short form file identifier for both paper and electronic files
Records Class
  • Records Classes or Records Series are common terms used to identify groups of related records
  • Promotes a common language for identifying, labelling, storing, and accessing records
  • Retention requirements are applied to Records Classes
Scope Notes / Description
  • Describes types of records found within Records Classes, as well as the relationships of terms to each other:
    • Includes: identifies types of records found within the Records Class
    • Excludes: identifies one off or exception records types specifically excluded and should be classified elsewhere
    • Notes: describes any other additional information related to that Records Class  
Responsible Office
  • Identifies the area or department that has primary responsibility for Records within the class such as Finance, Human Resources or Board Secretariat
  • Originating office means that the primary or responsible office depends on the records, if your area is the creator or source of records, then your office is the Responsible Office
  • If you are not the Responsible Office, then you may not be required to keep records as long as the retention period specified. 
  • If you are unsure if you are responsible, check with the other areas or contact to verify.
Retention Event
  • Identifies the trigger date or event which starts the Retention clock such as:
    • Completion: end of contract, term, process or project
    • Disposition of Asset: item is decommisioned, disposed of, or sold such as property, equipment, computers, etc.
    • End Year: end of calendar year ending December 31
    • End Year Academic: end of academic year ending April 30
    • End Year Fiscal: end of Fiscal year ending April 30
    • File Closed: date of last item in file
    • Superceded: date document superceded or replaced by a more current version
    • Termination: employment end or termination date used by Human Resources  
Retention Minimum (Years)
  • Number of years records need to be retained following Retention Event in order to meet administrative, operational, fiscal, regulatory, audit or other requirements
  • Many Records Classes have a minimum retention of 1 year, particularly Personal Information, as defined in FIPPA.
  • To calculate when records are eligible for disposition add the number of years to the latest year and add 1 - this will give you the year in which records can be disposed of.  For example:  2005+7+1=2013.
  • Defines the process or method for disposing of records when the retention period ends:
    • Archives: records of ongoing historical or archival value to the university may be transferred to the custody and responsibility of the University Archives for long term preservation.  (Note: this is different from Permanent records and transferring records to storage)
    • Destroy: records that have expired or passed their retention periods will be destroyed and such destruction documented for audit and due diligence purposes
    • Permanent: records that must be retained indefinitely for purposes other than archival selection.  Custody and responsibility remains with the Responsible Office even if transferred to off campus storage facilities.
  • Disposition processes must maintain the confidentiality and security of records.