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retention period


(also disposition standard), n. ~ The length of time records should be kept in a certain location or form for administrative, legal, fiscal, historical, or other purposes.


Retention periods are determined by balancing the potential value of the information to the agency against the costs of storing the records containing that information. Retention periods are set for record series, but specific records within that series may need to be retained longer because they are required for litigation or because circumstances give those records unexpected archival value.

A Glossary of Archival and Records Terminology