The Archives Regulation introduces a recordkeeping obligation for all public bodies. The obligation to register documents has been narrowed down in relation to the obligation to archive documents. The documents that are covered by this recordkeeping obligation are set out in Section 2-6 first paragraph of the Archives Regulation:

  • Firstly, it is a requirement that the document must be considered a case document for the body, as defined in the freedom of information legislation. A case document for the body is a document that has been received by or submitted to a body, or which the body has itself created, and which concerns the body’s area of responsibility or operations. A document is created when it is dispatched by the body. If this does not take place, the document is considered to be created when it is finalised.
  • Secondly, a document must form part of correspondence, i.e. it has been received or sent out by the body.
  • Thirdly, the document must have substantial content, i.e. it must both be subject to case handling and be of value as documentation.

When all three of these criteria are met, there is therefore an obligation to enter the document into a journal. Documents covered by the rules concerning archive limitation should not however be recorded. Beyond this, it is largely up to the body itself to decide what should or should not be entered into a journal.

In other words, the body has an obligation to archive documents that have been received or dispatched by the body. A body’s internal documents are entered into a journal as and when the body deems it appropriate.