FAQ: My Record Is Nowhere to Be Found on a Schedule—Now What?

The local government schedules or your state agency’s retention schedule should list all of the types of records your local government or state agency creates or receives since the disposition of a record cannot be carried out if it is not included on a retention schedule. Even so, a time may come when you will have a record that just does not fit into any of the record series in the above-mentioned retention schedules, and you might even double-check yourself to see if that record could somehow be lumped together with a record series that really just does not hit the mark. Well, there is an easy fix for this situation!

You might just have a very unique record series. While TSLAC is constantly revising and updating the local government and state agency retention schedules, new types of records are always being created, so there are record types that have not yet made their way into one of TSLAC’s published schedules.

If you are a local government, here is what you need to do:

  1. Create an internal amendment for the record by using the Documentation of Amendments to Local Government Retention Schedules template.
  2. Internal amendments are not filed with TSLAC. If a local government believes the unique series they are creating would benefit other, similar local governments, please share the unique series with us so that we can consider adding it to the local schedules to keep them updated. Your feedback helps other local governments!
  3. When determining an appropriate retention period for a record on an internal amendment, local governments should consider the following:
    • Be aware of any regulations, requirements, and industry standards related to the record that may affect how long it must be retained.
    • Assess potential departmental, business, and public needs to create a suitable retention period. Also, ask:
      • Is this a confidential record?
      • How would the Public Information Act apply to this record?
      • Could this be a historical record?
      • In the event of a disaster, is this record crucial to being able to continue regular operations?
  4. Also, see our blog article on Customizing Your Local Government Retention Schedule.

If you are a state agency, it is mandatory that you:

  1. Create an amendment for the record by using the SLR 122 template (see instructions for completion), and send it to your TSLAC Analyst for review and approval BEFORE disposing of the record.
  2. When determining an appropriate retention period for a unique record:
    • Take into account regulations, requirements, and industry standards that may affect how long a record must be retained.
    • Consider business operations as well as the potential needs of any departments and members of the public when assigning a retention period to a record. To help determine this, ask:
      • Is this a confidential record?
      • How would the Public Information Act apply to this record?
      • Could this be a historical record?
      • In the event of a disaster, is this record crucial to being able to continue regular operations?
  3. You can expect to see more content in The Texas Record related to creating unique record series and making the most of customizing agency retention schedules.

Contact us if you have any questions about the amendment process or if you would like to confirm if the record you hold already fits under one of the existing record series in the local or state retention schedules.

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