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All-Electronic HR Files? Your Call if State Law Agrees

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Employment Law,HR Management,Human Resources,Office Management,Records Retention

Q. You recently said that I-9 forms can now be stored electronically. To save on office space and filing time, our department is considering scanning and electronically filing all personnel files and documents. Is this OK? —S.S., California

A. In most federal employment-law statutes, no particular record format is required. Instead, most of them require only that the records contain the information specified in some form. For example, federal disability laws and anti-discrimination laws specify that if the information required is readily available electronically, no further records are required.

But before going completely digital, become familiar with your state's recordkeeping requirements. While your state of California, for example, doesn't specify that HR records be retained in either paper or electronic form, other states may follow different rules.

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