Records Disposition Overview
Disposition is an integral part of records management and is the third and final stage of the life cycle of records. According to the life cycle concept, records go through three basic stages:
- creation (or receipt),
- maintenance and use, and
All three stages of the records life cycle are interrelated.
Texas law authorizes state agencies and local governments in compliance to disposition a record under two conditions: (1) the record belongs to a record series on an approved records retention schedule and (2) its retention period has expired (Government Code §441.187; Local Government Records Act §202.001). As part of disposition, all Texas governments must use appropriate destruction methods and set aside records marked for review and archiving. State agencies are additionally required to keep a disposition log (13 Texas Administrative Code §6.83(b)(3)).
TSLAC recommends local governments incorporate a disposition log into their records management workflow for several reasons. Some of those reasons include because it helps save time and money working with their records, serves as a check to prevent potentially expensive mistakes from happening, and helps verify the overall “health” of the records management program.