“ Got boxes? “ Record Retention – Article by Mark Fragola

Every Association must retain records to show they are performing their obligated duties. Does this mean you keep every record forever and ever? Not exactly. There are certain documents you need to keep permanently and those you keep for a designated amount of time. Here is a quick overview from the Davis Stirling Act on what records you need to retain  and for how long:

Records Retention Policy

Following is a general guideline for how long records should be kept. Boards should check with the association’s attorney and CPA before disposing of records.

Governing Documents
    a. CC&Rs
    b. Bylaws
    c. Articles of Incorporation
    d. Condominium Plan
    e. construction plans (if available)
 Minutes of board and membership meetings. Civil Code §1365.2(i)(2).
 Minutes of committees with decision-making authority.
 Deeds to property owned by the association.

Seven Years
Financial Records
    a. general ledgers, journals and charts of account
    b. year-end financial statements
    c. tax returns and worksheets
    d. accounts payable
    e. accounts receivable ledgers, trial balances and billing records
    f.  canceled checks
    g. expense analyses and expense distribution schedules
    h. invoices from vendors
Expired Contracts
Personnel Records
    a. payroll records
    b. employee records after termination
Insurance Records
    a. accident reports
    b. settled claims
    c. expired policies
    d. fidelity bonds

Five Years
Financial Records
    a. bank statements
    b. deposit slips
    c. reconciliations
    d. budgets
    e. petty cash vouchers
    f. purchase orders
General Correspondence

Three Years
All records must be kept for at least three years (current fiscal year and two prior) for inspection by the membership. Civil Code §1365.2(i)(1).

One Year
Ballots must be stored by associations in a secure place for no less than one year after the date of the election. Civil Code §1363.03(i).


 – For more information about the Davis Stirling Act, click     –

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