Archival records in Archives of Bosnia-Herzegovina is part of our and world cultural heritage and they are state monument. Archives and current records are protected regardless of whose property or possession they are in, or whether they are registered or recorded.
Archives are records or documents which are of permanent legal, administrative, informational, cultural, artistic or historical value, created or received by persons or corporate bodies, public institutions or services, and enterprises, through their activities. Documents become archives by selection from current records. Current records are whole of documents created or received through activities of particular person or corporate body.
Archives created through activity of particular corporate body or person are whole – archival fond, and can not be devided.
In archival legislative in Bosnia-Herzegovina there are two categories of archives: public archives and private archives.
Public archives are archives created through activities of:
- central public authorities, government and institutions of state administration;
- entity, cantonal and other regional or other communities;
- public institutions, enterprises and corporate bodies which have public authority.
Public archives can not become a private property.
Public archives will be trasferred to competent archival institution in period that, as a principle, can not be longer than 30 years after creation of records.
Private archives are records / archives created through activities of private corporate bodies and persons, if they are not created in public activities and if they are not in property of state.
Archives in Archives of Bosnia-Herzegovina are stored in fonds and collections.
Archival fond is an organic whole of archives, created through activities of one corporate body or person.
Collection is group of documents, created by interests of their collector or by mutual character of documents.
Archives of Bosnia-Herzegovina collect archives by taking over from government bodies and institutions, also by purchase, gift or deposit. In a case of deposit, persons keep their rights and can take deposited archives. Archives of Bosnia-Herzegovina have a lot of copies of archives about Bosnia-Herzegovina too, collected in foreign archives.
More significant is publication Guide of Archives of Bosnia-Herzegovina published in 1987. Additions to this guide were published in vol. 32 of Glasnik arhiva i Društva arhivskih radnika, in 1993.
The first overall survey of archival records in Bosnia-Herzegovina was published in 1981. as a part of edition Archival fonds and collection in Socialistic Yugoslavia.