FMPM 931 Document Retention

Print Friendly and PDFPrint Friendly


This procedure sets out the responsibilities to ensure the University complies with legal requirements to retain financial records and where permitted, appropriately dispose of those records.



Responsibility of

Retention of financial records

Head of Organisational Unit

Retention of legal documents relating to financial matters

Manager, Records

Approval to destroy financial records

Manager, Records

Maintenance of destroyed financial records in JCU’s compliant records management system

Manager, Records


Financial records must be retained to provide an adequate audit/management trail of financial transactions to facilitate auditing by both JCU Legal and Assurance and the Auditor General and to act as prima facie evidence in a court of law in the event of a legal dispute arising.

Heads of Organisational Units will ensure that information of importance to the operation of the area, or information of a confidential nature is properly stored so as to:

  • maintain control over the information;
  • ensure that only those staff with the appropriate authority have access to the information; and
  • ensure that the information can be retrieved efficiently and effectively.

All records whether created, maintained or destroyed, are to be kept in a compliant ‘Electronic Document and Records Management System’ (EDRMS) in accordance with IS 31: Retention and Disposal of Public Records to ensure an adequate audit trail of JCU records is maintained. The following information is captured in the EDRMS:

  • unique record identifier/Record Number;
  • Classification of the records, in line with the Queensland State Archival Retention and Disposal Schedules
  • Queensland Disposal Authority Number (QDAN), version number and reference number under with the records are disposed;
  • disposal sentence (e.g. Retain for 5 years after last action);
  • date of disposal;
  • date of creation
  • audit trail of changes and
  • who destroyed/sentenced the records.

The above task is performed by the JCU Records team, however, it is the responsibility of all JCU employees to ensure the Records team has this information for the records they create and maintain.

Once the information has been preserved for the period prescribed in the Queensland State Archives General Retention and Disposal Schedule for Administrative Records and the University Sector Retention and Disposal Schedule, the following procedures must be conducted prior to the destruction of a financial record:

  • a list of the record/s eligible for destruction is to be complied by the Head of the Organisational Unit;
  • the list must be:
    • attached to a completed ‘Destruction Authority Form’ ;
    • authorised by the Director, Financial and Business Services; and
    • forwarded to the University Records Manager for approval, prior to any destruction.

The University is not required to notify Queensland State Archives of their intention to dispose of public records (which include JCU financial records) as long as they are disposed in accordance with Queensland State Archives General Retention and Disposal Schedule for Administrative Records and the University Sector Retention and Disposal Schedule.  However, the Head of Organisational Unit has a duty of care to ensure that the records are not required for a further period of time by the University or the State for any other purpose (e.g. legal, Administrative or Audit action).

Minimum Document Retention Periods

The retention periods outlined in the Queensland State Archives General Retention and Disposal Schedules are the minimum retention requirements and is to be read in conjunction with the Financial Management Practice Manual and do not represent a requirement that records must be destroyed after such periods. Longer periods may be prescribed for particular records under any Act of the Commonwealth in respect of Commonwealth matters or of the State or in respect of current or pending legal proceedings.

Financial Records Retention Period

Refer to Queensland State Archives General Retention and Disposal Schedule for Administrative Records published by Queensland State Archives.

Related documents and legislation

Appendix C - Related Legislation

IS 31: Retention and Disposal of Public Records

IS 40: Recordkeeping

Queensland State Archives General Retention and Disposal Schedule for Administrative Records

Destruction Authority Form (Contact the Manager, Records)

For enquiries in relation to this FMPM Procedure please contact


Approval Details

Policy Sponsor:

Deputy Vice Chancellor, Services and Resources

Approval Authority:

Deputy Vice Chancellor, Services and Resources

Version no:


Date for next Major Review (in accordance with the Policy Handbook):


Modification History

Approval date - the date the approval authority approved the establishment, minor or major amendment or disestablishment

Implementation Date - the date the policy was published in the Policy Library and is the date the policy takes effect


Approval date          

Implementation date





Reviewed and updated to reflect current financial document retention practices.

Director, Financial & Business Services




Policy sponsor and approval authority amended to reflect approved policy framework

Quality, Standards and Policy








Procedure established



Financial records retention, financial records disposal