Records Management Frequently Asked Questions

How can I request copies of specific records?
See the Public Records page to find helpful links to sources of public records throughout Harris County.

Are email messages records?
They can be, but usually aren't. The content of a document determines if it is a record—not the means of delivery. Just as most envelopes delivered by the U. S. Postal Service contain junk mail, most e-mails are non-record spam. But, not all. A good rule of thumb is if the e-mail documents that an obligation has been incurred or met, it is probably an official record. If not, it is probably not an official record.

How does Harris County destroy records?
We have a contract with a vendor certified by the National Association for Information Destruction to shred both official and unofficial records. Most office documents are placed into locked bins that are transported to the shredding facility in a locked truck where the locks are removed and the contents shredded. Operations that send records in bulk (such as the Harris County Records Center) palletize the records and the vendor typically picks-up 10 or more pallets and transports them in a locked truck to the facility.