Records Retention

You need record retention guidelines – from organizing personnel files and electronic records retention policies to control document management and more.

Business Management Daily provides personnel records retention guidelines, helping you to improve your hard-copy and electronic record retention.

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Q. We recently received a subpoena to produce the contents of an employee's personnel file in connection with a lawsuit. The employee is a party to the lawsuit, but the company is not. Do we have to comply with the subpoena? Should we tell the employee about the subpoena? —K.H., District of Columbia

Q. We fired an employee based on an eyewitness account of theft. We documented that report and put it in the ex-employee's personnel file. That person has now hired an attorney and asked to see the file. We feel that we have no obligation to respond. Do we have to turn it over without a subpoena? —E. I.  

A top-performing employee is diagnosed with depression and now says her medication makes it impossible for her to make it to work on time. Must an employer change her work schedule? A job applicant volunteers that he is intellectually disabled but says he can perform his job with a job coach. Is that a reasonable accommodation? Are you prepared to answer those questions ... and more?

New federal court rules for electronic-records maintenance and discovery took effect on Dec. 1, 2006. The rules govern discovery of electronically stored information in federal civil litigation ...

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

Don't open an employee's' personal mail If you know that a letter or package sent to that person at work is personal (not business related). A recent court ruling shows that you may be opening up a legal mess along with the letter ...

Q. We’re cleaning up our personnel files and updating emergency contact information. Some employees don’t want to provide their contact information. Is it legal for us to require them to give it to us? —S.S., California

HR Law 101: Nowadays, most organizations conduct exit interviews with departing employees to determine why they’ve resigned. Exit interviews can be a great HR tool, but you have to know what questions to ask and, at the same time, what questions to avoid for legal reasons ...

HR Law 101: The FMLA's recordkeeping requirements are less onerous than those of some other federal laws. But you must handle FMLA medical records with the same level of confidentiality as required under the ADA ...

The Texas workers’ compensation system is designed to replace the wages of employees who miss work due to on-the-job injuries. The system works as a no-fault guarantee. Employees who can show they were injured while working are entitled to a portion of their earnings and paid medical care for those injuries. They needn’t prove their employer was negligent. In exchange, injured employees can’t sue employers for negligence ...

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