Most offices have a records retention schedule that determines how long the office has to keep client or patient records. At the end of the retention time, the office may shred the files if the clients or patients do not want them. Personnel should use proper procedures for document destruction of those documents and files that have an expired retention time. For example, the law requires many law offices to retain client files for at least seven years. At the end of seven years, the office may destroy the files if the client does not want them.