business record

n. documents and other materials created or received by a commercial enterprise in the course of operations and preserved for future use


An organization may have many business records1 that fall under the general definition of a record2 but that are not covered by the more specific definition of business records established by the Federal Rules of Evidence (most states have similar rules). The distinction is significant in the context of litigation. All materials that fall under the more general understanding of business records are subject to discovery, but only those records that are the result of regularly conducted activity fall under the hearsay exemption of the Federal Rules of Evidence and are admissible in court as evidence.