Data Retention Policy


INTRODUCTION

The Data Retention Policy is organised as follows:

SECTION TOPIC

  1. Accounting and Finance
  2. Contracts
  3. Corporate Records
  4. Correspondence and Internal Memoranda
  5. Personal Information
  6. Electronic Records
  7. Insurance Records
  8. Legal
  9. Miscellaneous
  10. Personnel Records
  11. Tax Records

1. ACCOUNTING AND FINANCE

Record Type and then Retention Period

  • Annual Audit Reports and Financial Statements: Permanent
  • Annual Audit Records, including work papers and other documents that relate to the audit: 7 years after completion of audit
  • Annual Plans and Budgets: 7 years
  • Bank Statements and Cancelled Cheques: 7 years
  • Employee Expense Reports: 7 years
  • Interim Financial Statements: 7 years
  • Invoices and Supplier Invoices: 7 years
  • VAT information and returns: 7 years

2. CONTRACTS

Record Type and then Retention Period

Contracts and Related Correspondence (including any proposal that resulted in the contract and all other supportive documentation): 7 years after expiration or termination

3. CORPORATE RECORDS

Record Type and then Retention Period

  • Corporate Records (minutes, signed minutes of the Board and all committees, record of incorporation, articles of incorporation, annual corporate reports): Permanent
  • Licenses and Permits: Permanent

4. CORRESPONDENCE AND INTERNAL MEMORANDA

General Principle: Most correspondence and internal memoranda should be retained for the same period as the document to which they pertain or support. For instance, a letter pertaining to a particular subscription or contract would be retained as long as the subscription or contract (7 years after expiration). It is recommended that records that support a particular project be kept with the project and take on the retention time of that particular project file.

Correspondence or memoranda that do not pertain to documents having a prescribed retention period should generally be discarded sooner. These may be divided into two general categories:

  1. Those pertaining to routine matters and having no significant, lasting consequences should be discarded within five years. Some examples include:
    • Routine letters and notes that require no acknowledgment or follow up, such as notes of appreciation, congratulations, letters of transmittal, and plans for meetings.
    • Form letters that require no follow up.
    • Letters of general inquiry and replies that complete a cycle of correspondence.
    • Letters or complaints requesting specific action that have no further value after changes are made or action taken (such as name or address change).
    • Other letters of inconsequential subject matter or that definitely close correspondence to which no further reference will be necessary.
    • Chronological correspondence files.
    • Please note that copies of interoffice correspondence and documents where a copy will be in the originating department file should be read and destroyed, unless that information provides reference to or direction to other documents and must be kept for project traceability.
  2. Those pertaining to non-routine matters or having significant lasting consequences should generally be retained permanently.

5. Retaining personal information

  1. This Section sets out the data retention policies and procedure of Business Sale Report, which are designed to help ensure compliance with legal obligations in relation to the retention and deletion of personal information
  2. Personal information that is processed by Business Sale Report for any purpose or purposes shall not be kept for longer than is necessary for that purpose or those purposes.

Without prejudice to point 2 (above) Business Sale Report will usually delete personal data falling within the categories set out below at the date/time set out below: Record Type and then Retention Period

  • Information about a computer and about visits to and use of the Business Sale Report websites (including an IP address, geographical location, browser type and version, operating system, referral source, length of visit, page views and website navigation paths: 2 years
  • Information provided for subscribing to email notifications and/or newsletters (including a name and email address): Indefinitely or until the client chooses to ‘unsubscribe’
  • Information provided when using the services on the website, or that is generated during the use of those services (including the timing, frequency and pattern of service use) : Indefinitely
  • Information relating to any subscriptions made (including name, address, telephone number, email address and sector sought): 3 years or until consent is withdrawn
  • Information submitted to our website for publication on the internet and/or in our printed publications: 7 years after post
  • Information contained in or relating to any communications sent through the website (including the communication content and meta data associated with the communication): 3 years following contact
  • Any other personal information chosen to be sent: 3 years following contact

Notwithstanding the other provisions of this Section, Business Sale Report will retain documents (including electronic documents) containing personal data:

(a) to the extent that Business Sale Report is required to do so by law;

(b) if Business Sale Report believes that the documents may be relevant to any ongoing or prospective legal proceedings;

(c) and to establish, exercise or defend Business Sale Report’s legal rights (including providing information to others for the purposes of fraud prevention and reducing credit risk).

(d) if explicit consent is given by the data subject.

Each day Business Sale Report will run a database backup copy of all electronic data contained on Business Sale Report data centre. This backup will include all information relating to current users, as well as any information that remains due to any reason contained in this policy.

6. ELECTRONIC DOCUMENTS

  1. Electronic Mail: Not all email needs to be retained, depending on the subject matter.
    • All e-mail—from internal or external sources – is to be deleted after 12 months.
    • Staff will strive to keep all but an insignificant minority of their e-mail related to business issues.
    • The Company will archive e-mail for 90 days after the staff has deleted it, after which time the e-mail will be permanently deleted.
    • Staff will take care not to send confidential/proprietary information held by Business Sale Report to outside sources
  2. Electronic Documents: including Office 365 and PDF files, retention also depends on the subject matter.

The Company does not automatically delete electronic files beyond the dates specified in this Policy. It is the responsibility of all staff to adhere to the guidelines specified in this policy.

In certain cases a document will be maintained in both paper and electronic form. In such cases the official document will be the electronic document.

7. INSURANCE RECORDS

Record Type and then Retention Period

  • Certificates Issued to The Company Permanent
  • Claims Files (including correspondence, medical records, etc.) Permanent
  • Insurance Policies (including expired policies) Permanent

8. LEGAL FILES AND PAPERS

Record Type and then Retention Period

  • Legal Memoranda and Opinions (including all subject matter files): 7 years after close of matter
  • Litigation Files: 1 year after expiration of appeals or time for filing appeals
  • Court Orders: Permanent

9. MISCELLANEOUS

Record Type and then Retention Period

  • Material of Historical Value (including pictures, publications): Permanent
  • Policy and Procedures Manuals – Original: Current version with revision history
  • Annual Reports: Permanent

10. PERSONNEL RECORDS

Record Type and then Retention Period

  • Employee Personnel Records (including individual attendance records, application forms, job or status change records, performance evaluations, termination papers, withholding information, garnishments, test results, training and qualification records): 6 years after separation
  • Employment Contracts – Individual: 6 years after separation
  • Employment Records Correspondence with Employment Agencies and Advertisements for Job Openings: 3 years from date of hiring decision

11. TAX RECORDS

General Principle: The Company must keep books of account or records as are sufficient to establish amount of gross income, deductions, credits, or other matters required to be shown in any such return.

These documents and records shall be kept for as long as the contents thereof may become material in the administration of state, and local income, franchise, and property tax laws.

Record Type and then Retention Period

  • Tax-Exemption Documents and Related Correspondence: Permanent
  • Tax Bills, Receipts, Statements: 7 years
  • Tax Returns: Permanent
  • Sales/Use Tax Records: years
  • Annual Information Returns: Permanent