Important Things to Consider When Storing and Managing Legal Records
Many of us choose our professions based on our personal interest and ability to perform in that industry. Unfortunately, the eagerness to thrive and succeed in a certain business sometimes fades with the realization that the job also entails other things that are unappealing or challenging. I’ve often seen gifted leaders get bogged down by things like administrative duties that are required to make the business run legally and smoothly.
In your business, storing and managing legal records is a necessary task that can be time-consuming and confusing. To help ease the burden, here are some important things to consider when storing and managing your legal records.
What Is Legal Records Management?
Legal records management is the process used to create, store, and organize legal records, which can include everything from business contracts to case notes to court filings. Records management will involve establishing solutions for storage and filing. It will also be necessary to know and follow data protection and privacy laws.
Storing & Managing Is Vital
If your legal records are poorly managed, they can easily become damaged or lost. Untracked movement of files can cause havoc for businesses that store their legal documents on-site in filing cabinets. Losing a document can lead to serious consequences, such as damage to your professional reputation, loss of clients, non-compliance with data privacy laws, and even a data breach.
Instead of storing documents on site with all the risks that involves, consider working with a professional records management company that will store them offsite, but has your files bar coded and can get them to you 24/7, either in person or digitally with Scan On Demand.
Your legal files are full of confidential information. Protecting confidentiality becomes more challenging as the number of files you manage increases. Whether your information is digital or physical, a records management policy with access controls is needed so you can restrict who has access to what.
The law requires that you protect of the personally identifiable information (PII) you generate or store, so it is vital that you work with a records management company that is compliant with all data privacy laws. A reputable records management company has trained and experienced staff to manage your files in a legally-compliant manner. They also have the safe and secure records storage facilities designed to protect your documents from theft, fire, water, rodents and disasters of all kinds.
3. Space & Time
Legal files take up valuable space, especially those that are archived or infrequently used. If you feel your space is too small and think that moving is the only solution, consider moving some or all of your legal files offsite instead. It is the most affordable way to add to your usable square footage.
While some legal documents must be kept indefinitely, other records are subject to retention periods, and should not be stored beyond the specified date. It is required by law that your business abides by the retention periods for each type of document, removing and properly destroying them at the end of their lifecycle.
Partnering with a local records management company allows you to benefit from their knowledge and systems to stay compliant. A full-service provider that offers NAID AAA Certified shredding services can destroy files at the end of their lifecycle.
Pacific Records Management provides compliant, off-site records storage and management that will help alleviate your business of the task of maintaining documents while making them available for quick access and retrieval. We work with legal professionals throughout California’s Central Valley. Call us at 800-685-9034 or complete the form on this page to learn more about what we can do for you.