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Destruction of Public Records

Before destroying public records under the Virginia Public Records Act, you must confirm all of the following:

  • The record appears on a records retention and disposition schedule approved pursuant to § 42.1-82 and the record's retention period has expired;
  • A certificate of records destruction, as designated by the Librarian of Virginia, has been properly completed and approved by the agency's designated records officer; and
  • There is no litigation, audit, investigation, request for records pursuant to the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (§ 2.2-3700 et seq.), or renegotiation of the relevant records retention and disposition schedule pending at the expiration of the retention period for the applicable records series.

Agency 209 (UVa Medical Center):

Please contact Ben Smith - Records Manager (434-243-6007), UVa Medical Center, Office of Risk Management for assistance with destruction of records.

Agency 207 (UVa Academic Areas):


Follow these steps for approved destruction:
  • Review the disposition instructions for the records on the Records Retention and Disposition Schedules
  • If you do not have an official hold notice for a litigation, audit, investigation, freedom of information act request, or other official hold, then you may destroy the records.  You must clear any holds with the office placing the hold before destroying.  You may contact the Records Management Office to confirm any known holds on records at records@virginia.edu or 434-243-9162.
  • Complete a Certificate of Records Destruction (RM3) and submit it to the Records Management Office.  You may submit your RM3 Form one of two ways (SCANS, COPIES OR FAXES ARE NOT ACCEPTABLE):
    • Complete the form in the Word format and save the form (Do not print and scan).  Attach the word document to an email and send to records@virginia.edu requesting review for approval.  You will receive a response within 2 working days with further instructions.
    • Print the form and send it with original signature in Line 10 only, to the Records Management Office at Box 400898.  You will receive the form back with an approval to destroy.
  • You may not destroy records until you have received an approval to destroy from the University Records Officer. Once you receive approval to destroy (either via email or the return of an approval form – signed on Line 11 by the Records Officer) you may destroy the records.  The person handling the destruction will sign on Line 12 of the form after the records are destroyed.  If you use UVA Recycling, please have them sign on Line 12 when they pick up the records. After destruction, you must send the form with original signatures to the Records Management Office (PO Box 400898). The Records Management Office will submit the final form to the Library of Virginia in accordance with the Virginia Public Records Act.  If you received an email approval to destroy, you will receive a scan of the final RM3 form via email for your records.
  • The University Records Management Office is the official record keeper for all Certificate of Records Destruction (RM3) Forms.  All copies in departments and offices are reference/convenience copies and can be destroyed without approval and at will.

Download a blank Certificate of Records Destruction (RM3)

Instructions for completing a Certificate of Records Destruction