Files Management: Purging

Records which have reached the end of their retention period and are not archival can be considered obsolete. Obsolete records should be purged on a regular basis.

Purging serves several purposes:

  • reduces the number of files in an office
  • facilitates the retrieval of information as there are fewer files to search
  • avoids last minute crash programs to clean out office or storage areas
  • ensures compliance with records retention schedules
  • reduces the risk of litigation loss
  • reduces the risk of unfavorable audit findings


Duplicates and other material that may be disposed of without a specific records retention period can be purged at any time. Confidential records must be shredded.