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State Agency Retention Schedules

The State Archives authorizes the retention and disposition of state agency records and provides this authority through the issuance of records retention and disposition schedules. All agency records must be scheduled prior to destruction, temporary storage at the State Records Center, or permanent transfer to the Archives.

There are two types of schedules that state agencies may utilize:

  • General Schedule that covers common administrative, fiscal, and personnel records of all state agencies. Agencies that have not already adopted the General Schedule and wish to do so may complete and submit the General Schedule Adoption Form.
  • Agency-specific schedules, also called Records Disposition Authorizations (RDAs), that cover records unique to the agency and records not found in the General Schedule.

Agencies should use State Agency Records Disposition Request (RDR) forms to develop or update RDAs. Agencies should contact their records management officer (RMO) or email us at for copies or listings of current agency-specific schedules or to update obsolete or inaccurate schedule items.

SUNY Schedule (agency-specific example)

The State University of New York (SUNY) developed, and the State Archives approved, its agency-specific SUNY schedule for SUNY campuses and SUNY System Administration records.

Archival or Historical Records

The Archives appraises records and acquires, preserves, and makes available agency records of enduring historical or research value. Records marked with a disposition of “transfer to the State Archives” have been appraised as archival and, once the retention period has been satisfied, arrangements should be made to transfer legal custody of the records to the Archives. For guidance on preparing records for transfer, consult the Procedures for Transferring Records to the New York State Archives.

Emergency Disposition Requests

When government records are a hazard to human safety or health or to property, your records management officer may request authorization from the Archives to destroy or dispose of such records immediately. For more information, refer to the Archives' page on requesting early destruction of records.