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Personnel Files

State law dictates employees’ access to personnel file


Q. An ex-employee whom we fired is now asking to take some documents from his personnel file. Is he legally allowed to do this? Do we have to give him the information just because he’s asking for it? —L.B., North Carolina

Assist ailing employees without fear of triggering ADA

Issue: Who is considered “disabled” under ADA’s definition?
Risk: Employees earn ADA protection if you regard them as disabled, even if their condition doesn’t rise to the law’s definition of …

New motivation to complete your EEO-1 paperwork

If you’re required to file an annual EEO-1 form, don’t let the task slip: The EEOC can get tough with companies that shrug off this duty. Example: The EEOC filed a …

Make privacy a cornerstone of your culture

Confidentiality can quickly become a legal issue in many workplace decisions and activities.

Never sign HR documents for employees

As part of his age-bias lawsuit, James Halloran claimed that his employer’s HR director signed Halloran’s signature to the bottom of a negative performance review. At trial, the company admitted to …

Keep rejected applications for three years


Q. I read in your publication that if an applicant isn’t hired, we should retain the application for at least three years. I’ve heard elsewhere that applications should be kept for only one year beyond the date the position is filled. Have the rules changed? —S.C., Washington

Be prepared for new ‘green card’ design

When completing I-9s this year, expect to receive a different-looking “green card” from some new hires. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently altered the design of the Permanent Resident …

Payroll records: What to track (and for how long)


Violating Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) timekeeping rules can be a costly error, as the hospital in one case discovered. The FLSA requires employers to keep at least the following …

Well-meaning assistance won’t always mean you view worker as ‘disabled’

If your organization regards an employee as having a
“disability”, even if his or her condition doesn’t rise to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)’s definition, your actions could cause …

I-9s: Online or on paper?


Q. Congress just gave employers the OK to maintain I-9 records electronically. I do payroll for a church. How can we make the switch from paper to electronic? —D.K., Arkansas