New address: 24 Farnsworth Street, Boston, MA 02210-1409.
March 15, 2009
Q: We’re doing some housecleaning at church and we have a question about how long we should be keeping our legal and financial records. Is there a recommended time period that a church should hang onto its financial records?
A: This is something each organization needs to decide on its own, says Tim Brennan, the Unitarian Universalist Association’s (UUA’s) treasurer and vice president of finance. He recommends that congregations seek legal counsel locally before discarding records. The firm Pfau England Nonprofit Law offers recommendations on records retention. The general recommendations are to permanently keep agendas and minutes, year-end treasurer’s reports, audit reports, and background checks.
IRS returns and bank and investment statements should be kept seven years. Employee files should be kept for three years after termination.
[Note: This article was updated on 6.5.14.]
For more information contact
This work is made possible by the generosity of individual donors and congregations.
Please consider making a donation today.
Last updated on Friday, June 6, 2014.
Sidebar Content, Page Navigation
More Ways to Search
InterConnections by email
The InterConnections newsletter publishes tips and stories about vital congregations for lay leaders and the professional staff who work with them. Published quarterly, InterConnections is mailed free to congregational board members. Current and archived stories are available to everyone online.
Donate to Support This Program and the Ongoing Work of the UUA
Read or subscribe to UUA.org Updates for the latest additions to our site.
Learn more about the Beliefs & Principles of Unitarian Universalism, or read our online magazine, UU World, for features on today's Unitarian Universalists. Visit an online UU church, or find a congregation near you.