Jefferson Lab > IT/CIO > IR
Privacy and Security Notice

Managing Vital Records

What are vital records?

Simple definition:
VITAL RECORDS: Records or documents, for legal, regulatory, or operational reasons, cannot be irretrievably lost or damaged without materially impairing the organization's ability to conduct business.

Detailed definition:
There are two categories of vital records. These are:

  1. Rights and interest records. Records essential to the protection of the legal and financial rights of an organization and of the individuals directly affected by the organization's activities:
    • Accounts-receivable records
    • Social security records
    • Payroll records
    • Retirement records
    • Insurance records
    • Any records relating to contracts, entitlement, leases, or obligations whose loss would pose a significant risk to the legal and financial rights of the Federal Government or persons directly affected by its actions
    • System documentation for any electronic information systems designated as records needed to protect rights
  2. Emergency operating records. Records essential to the continued functioning of an organization during emergency response activities and after an emergency to ensure the continuation of the organization
    • System backups
    • Emergency preparedness plans
    • Orders of succession
    • Delegations of authority
    • Emergency staffing assignments
    • Emergency operations center access credentials and classified or restricted access container documentation
    • Building plans and building systems operations manuals and equipment inventory
    • File plans describing the records series and electronic information systems maintained at official filing stations
    • Vital records inventories
    • Copies of Jefferson Lab program records (regardless of media) needed to carry out continuing critical functions
    • System documentation for any electronic information systems designated as emergency-operating records