PERSONNEL FILES

Can a former employee demand access to her personnel file?

09/17/2014
Q. A former employee called HR asking to review her personnel file. We already let her review her file following termination last year, and nothing has changed in the personnel file since she reviewed it. Can we just tell the former employee “No”? Or can we ask her to pay for a copy of the file for her own records? Our HR manager is going on vacation next week. Can we wait to deal with the former employee’s request until after the human resources manager gets back from vacation?

How long to retain employment records?

08/29/2014
Q. I recently discharged some of my employees. How long must I retain their employment records? Are there different rules for electronic records versus paper ones?

Must we allow employee to review everything in her personnel file?

04/23/2014
Q. One of our employees has asked to see her personnel file. Are we required to show her the file? If so, do we have to give her access to everything contained in the file?

Teach supervisors how to manage HR-related documents and files

02/25/2014

In their quest to tidy up, super­visors sometimes discard documents that should actually have been sub­­mitted to HR and added to an em­­ployee’s official personnel file, e.g., FMLA leave requests. Here are tips for deciding which documents to retain and which to pitch.

IRCA: Hiring Immigrants

02/22/2014

HR Law 101: Two laws govern U.S. immigration policy: the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952 and the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986, which was amended in 1990. For each new employee hired, U.S. employers must complete a Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification. The I-9 establishes the employee’s identity and legal work status.

Acceptable Documents for I-9

02/20/2014

HR Law 101: Under the Immigration Reform and Control Act, new employees must provide to employers proof of identity and employment eligibility with documents listed on the I-9 Form ....

Progressive Discipline

01/18/2014

HR Law 101: The most reliable way to protect your organization from charges of wrongful discharge is to establish and enforce a system of progressive discipline. Make it clear to all your supervisors that they're expected to abide by your policy ...

Making copies of documents won't replace duty to fill out I-9

11/07/2013
There’s no shortcut for completing the Employment Eligibility Verification (I-9) form for each new hire, as a Washington state company learned recently.

To do: Complete and file 2013 EEO-1 surveys by Sept. 30

08/06/2013
You should have an envelope from the EEOC in your in-box. The contents: the 2013 EEO-1 Survey. By law, affected employers must file their EEO-1 reports by Sept. 30.

There's a reason for all those disciplinary rules!

07/31/2013
You should be able to easily pull up every employee’s disciplinary history and show that the employee received a copy, acknowledged an oral warning or was counseled. Consider what happened in the following case when recordkeeping lapsed.

Discuss firing only with those who need to know

07/30/2013
As a general rule, you should only discuss a worker’s termination with those who really need to know about it. That’s especially true in sensitive cases involving alleged fraud, theft or falsifications. You don’t want to lose a defamation case because a manager decided to make an example of a fired employee.

How long must we retain personnel files?

07/05/2013
Q. We are moving to another office and want to take this opportunity to purge outdated or unnecessary documents. How long do we have to keep our personnel files?

Medical records for past employees: Should we retain them? If so, how long?

06/12/2013
Q. Is there any reason to keep old medical files on past employees? Usually the info in the medical files is whether they’ve had a TB test, typical paperwork on physicals, or return-to-work information after pregnancies or injuries.

Remember: Contract workers are eligible to sue you, too

05/28/2013
Here’s a reminder that you need to document disciplinary and workplace problems for temporary contract employees, too. It doesn’t matter that they know they only have a job for a set period of time.

Multistate employer: Can we centralize our I-9s?

05/20/2013

Q. We are headquartered in Oklahoma and have offices in another state that do their own hiring. Must I maintain a copy of I-9s at our headquarters from that other office? 

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