Federal Records Management

​Reviewing Transfer Requests in ERA for the Annual Move

An Annual Move Transfer is a transfer of permanent records from temporary storage in a Federal Records Center (FRC) to the physical and legal custody of the National Archives. In general, the National Archives will generate the Transfer Request (TR) forms for permanent records stored at an FRC that are eligible for accessioning in the fiscal year. To initiate an Annual Move transfer, you must review, update, and submit the National Archives generated Transfer Request forms in the Electronic Records (ERA) system (or an SF-258 if special circumstances merit use; see the ERA Frequently Asked Questions for more details). ERA system requirements are further explained in the ERA Agency User Manual. Please note that ERA is an unclassified system.

Once we receive your form, we will review it for approval, and a member of our staff will contact you regarding next steps. If you have questions about the Annual Move process, please contact your accessioning archivist or Annual.Move@nara.gov.

The Annual Move Cycle

The timeline below roughly illustrates the Annual Move cycle. For more information, please contact Annual.Move@nara.gov.

Generally, agencies will receive a list of transfers eligible for the next Fiscal Year’s Annual Move prior to the beginning of that Fiscal Year.

Agencies should review this list and contact Annual.Move@nara.gov if any erroneous information is included.

The National Archives generates the Transfer Request forms for eligible records on or around October 1. Agencies should take action on the Transfer Request forms generated by the National Archives within the year they are generated. Transfer Requests created by the National Archives which remain in Draft status expire 15 months after creation

“Eligible Transfers” include records permanent and eligible by date, according to the information in ARCIS. Transfers for the Annual Move are eligible in 5-year increments (e.g. 2017, 2012, 2007, 2002, etc. for the FY 2017 Annual Move).

To search for your agency’s Annual Move Transfer Request forms

  • Log in as the agency transferring official
  • Use “Advanced Search”
  • Select the Business Object “Transfer Request”
  • Use the keyword [Fiscal Year] Annual Move (example: “2017 Annual Move”)
  • Select status Draft
  • Input your Record Group number

For more guidance on updating Transfer Request forms, see the Annual Move TR Tips or the ERA Agency User Manual

    Section 7a: Fields in the General Information Tab, page 46

    Section 7b: Fields in the Transfer Details Tab, page 53

    Section 7c: Creating Transfer Requests, page 57

    Section 7d: Drafting Transfer Requests using an Existing Transfer Request, page 65

    Section 7e: Bulk Submission Process (SAMO), page 66

ERA Transfer Process Training

Once you have finished updating your Transfer Request, please submit it to the National Archives. Transfer Requests that have been submitted to the National Archives will be in Ready for Approval status.

Annual Move Transfer Request Tips:

Agencies should review all fields on the Transfer Request forms to confirm that the information is correct. However, there are a few specific fields relevant to the Annual Move Transfer Request forms that we would like to highlight here.

Please note that information in ERA for Annual Move Transfer Request forms is derived from information in ARCIS. If information in ERA is incorrect, it is likely that the ARCIS information is also incorrect. If you note any substantive errors in ERA, particularly relating to the Disposition Authority, Inclusive End Date, or Classification, please notify your Accessioning Archivist or Annual.Move@nara.gov.

General Information Tab:

ERA Transfer Request Section ERA Transfer Request Field(s) Agency Action
General Information Disposition Authority Number

Ensure that this is correct and applies to the records being transferred. If the schedule item is incorrect, please notify your NARA representative before taking any further action.

General Information Major/Minor Subdivision These fields should contain information about the offices which created the records. Major subdivision refers to the broad organizational component that maintained the records, while minor subdivision refers to the specific office or unit. These fields should not be used to capture information about the transferring records management office.
General Information Inclusive Dates Ensure that dates apply to records being transferred, if not, please edit and notify your NARA representative. If the updated inclusive dates impact the record’s eligibility for transfer, do not propose the Transfer Request to NARA.
Access Restriction All fields under section

Review this section very carefully. The data in these fields is derived from ARCIS but may be incomplete or require updating. It is essential that this information is correct.

Do not change the Security Classification level until you notify your NARA representative.

Note: It is the responsibility of the agency to ensure that all access restriction information is complete and accurate, including Privacy Act and all FOIA exemptions. If the records contain Sensitive But Unclassified (SBU) information, please apply the appropriate FOIA Restriction, choose from FOIA (b)(2) through FOIA (b)(9).

Note: The March 2011 Supreme Court decision narrowed the scope and application of FOIA (b)(2).

Note: If the records are classified or have been declassified in full, please attach the NA-14130.

Note: If the records are subject to a statutory restriction or special marking, please update the relevant fields.  

Access Restriction Privacy Act Notice

If records are subject to the Privacy Act and all fields are completed, you do not need to provide a copy of the System of Records Notice (SORN).

When records are part of a Privacy Act System of Records, Access Restriction is “Restricted-Fully” and Specific Access Restriction is “FOIA (b)(6) Personal Information.”
Use Restriction All fields under section

There is no data in ARCIS regarding use restrictions. The default for the field will be “Undetermined “ and there will be a default Use Restriction Note message.

 

If you select anything other than Unrestricted, the Use Restriction Note field is required.

 

This section of the Transfer Request refers to copyright, donor, trademark, or other restrictions on how researchers may reproduce the records. Use restrictions do not impact researcher access to the records.

Records Type General Records Type Only one selection will be derived from ARCIS data, but if additional records types are known, they should be added.

Transfer Details Tab:

ERA Transfer Request Section ERA Transfer Request Field(s) Agency Action
Destination Physical Location of Records Destination Custodial Unit If you believe this information is incorrect, do not change it.  Do not Submit/Propose to NARA.  Please notify your NARA representative.
List of Containers Number of Containers & Container Type Ensure that the Number of Containers & Container Type field data is correct.

Contact Information Tab:

ERA Transfer Request Section ERA Transfer Request Field(s) Agency Action
Transferring Agency Official Agency This data populates from the agency associated with the records.  Please verify the data is correct.  
Other Contacts Other Contacts Other Contacts (Agency/NARA):  Do not delete information from these fields.

Attachments:

In general, additional attachments are not required for unclassified records proposed for inclusion in the Annual Move. However, if you have a finding aid or other documentation that you believe would facilitate researcher access to the records, we ask that you upload it to the “Attachments” tab.


For classified or declassified records, the NA-14130 is required and should be uploaded to the “Attachments” tab.

Review and Physical Transfer:

Second Quarter Annual Move:

Agencies generally have until December 1 to review the Transfer Request forms and propose them to the National Archives for inclusion in the second quarter Annual Move.

The National Archives regularly searches for newly submitted Transfer Requests in ERA. An accessioning archivist reviews each Transfer Request and finding aid and will contact you with any questions.  If necessary, the National Archives may return the Transfer Request form to Draft status for additional agency action.

Once any questions are resolved, the National Archives will approve the transfer by updating the status of the Transfer Request to "Ready for No More Shipments in ERA" and to "Accession Approved" in ARCIS.

Records approved for inclusion in the second quarter Annual Move will be physically moved or in-place accessioned by the end of the second quarter.

Fourth Quarter Annual Move:

Agencies that propose records for transfer after December 1 will have until June 1 to propose records for review and potential inclusion in the fourth quarter Annual Move.

Records approved for the fourth quarter transfer are generally moved or accessioned in place in August or September.

If you propose a Transfer Request after June 1, or if we do not complete the review for the fourth quarter Annual Move, the Transfer Request will roll forward into the next year’s move (e.g., 2017 TRs proposed after June 1 would roll forward into the 2018 review queue).   

If you have questions about the Annual Move cycle, please contact your accessioning archivist or Annual.Move@nara.gov

Post-Transfer Actions:

After physically receiving the records, the National Archives will conduct a quality assurance review to confirm that we have received all records approved for transfer. If any records approved for transfer are not received, we may contact you for additional information.

After we complete the quality assurance review and discuss any outstanding issues with the agency, the National Archives will take several actions in the ERA system to capture updates to the transfer documentation and complete the accessioning process:

  • Ready for Physical Custody Decision: this Transfer Request status indicates that the records have been received, but on-site review is not yet complete
  • Physical Custody Accepted: This Transfer Request status indicates that the National Archives has accepted physical custody of the records – this is the terminal status for the Transfer Request

Once the Transfer Request is placed in Physical Custody Accepted status, the ERA system creates a Legal Transfer Instrument (LTI) for the records.  The National Archives accepts legal custody of records by placing the Legal Transfer Instrument in Legal Custody Accepted status.

Updated: September 20, 2021

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