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How to Retain Employee Records

Author: Cheryl Lipton, The GhostWriters, Ltd.

Poor records management can cost an organization in two primary ways:

  • Failure to keep required records can result in fines or other punishments from the government; and
  • Failure to retain records of an investigation, claim or complaint can doom a case.

Accordingly, most companies have detailed document retention policies and schedules that should be followed carefully. In determining proper recordkeeping procedures, the following considerations should be addressed: (i) what to keep and for how long; (ii) what needs to be kept confidential; (iii) where to store records; and (iv) how to destroy the documents that no longer need to be kept.

Whenever in question, the best practice is to ask counsel before destroying any document, especially if it is regarding a contentious employment decision that may lead to litigation.