Retention period of documents

Within an organization there are many documents with a mandatory retention period. It is important to pursue these rules. When information is not complete or even lost, difficult legal processes can be the result. Reducing these risks is possible by applying document management at a differentiated level.

Legislation on retention periods

Structuring documents and storing them correctly is quite time consuming. Even then, the question is whether the information can be retrieved easily at a later date. For those organisations that still have a paper archive, it takes up a lot of space and the question is whether the legal retention periods can be met. In fact, this is no different digitally, because there too many organisations lack an overview. What about retention periods?

Please note: there are many exceptions to these rules, some parts of the file need to be kept for a shorter or longer period of time.

There are many types of documents and each type has its own legal retention obligation. Some examples of the retention periods:

  • Financial documents: 7 years
  • Medical records: 10 years after date of death of the patient
  • Personnel records: 3 years after end of termination of employment
  • Case files Law: keep for 5 years after closing a case.

Differentiated approach

We advise to properly map out what kind of information the organisation has and what distinction can best be made. The differentiated approach means that current records, such as personnel records of current employees, as well as medical records of patients from the appointments portal, are digitised and made available digitally via Archive-IT’s software. Digitally, you can easily assign retention periods to document types if you use the right software. In the AIR application, for example, this is very easy to achieve. You determine, possibly together with a consultant, which document types exist and which retention period should be linked to them. After the retention period has expired, the software will compile a list for destruction. Safe and trusted.

In order to save costs, the other (less current) files, which are hardly ever consulted, are stored in our secure archive building. As soon as a file is needed, it can be requested via the software by means of Scanning on Demand. Requesting is possible any time of the day. This way you save costs by not immediately digitizing everything. A storage period can also be taken into account when registering the files. This allows you to apply a thorough destruction policy to the paper files as well. Each year, you can easily print out a list of which files have expired and have them destroyed confidentially.


In this way, you will be able to handle your documentation cost-effectively and manage the retention periods of your documents easily. So you don’t have to keep anything longer than necessary, no information is lost and you can find your information at any time. An investment of this kind will certainly be repaid in the long run.

As a customer, you determine the retention periods of your archive yourself. We can then process these in our software and processes, so that you know which files no longer need to be kept at any given time. If desired, we can include this in our destruction policy.