What Your Personnel Files Should Contain

State and federal laws allow employees to review their files and even make copies. And though state laws vary when it comes to details, it’s odds on that there is a court decision allowing access and prohibiting retaliation against your employee.

That said, be careful about what you keep in your personnel files.

According to Entrepreneur.com, a personnel file should include the following: the job application, job description, performance evaluations, attendance records, salary history, record of promotions and transfers, commendations, warnings, disciplinary actions, training history, forms allowing deductions, forms with emergency contacts, noncompete contracts and other similar documents.

So what are the things you should not include in a personnel file? Documents such as arrest records, criminal convictions, and credit histories should not make their way into the file. Entrepreneur.com says that since personnel files provide fodder for lawsuits; exclude anything that you wouldn’t want a jury to see. To make it easier for you, think about what things an employee wouldn’t want a co-worker to see.

Medical records on the other hand, should be kept in a separate locked filing cabinet with very limited access. Federal law requires employers to keep these records separate and confidential.

Again, practice prudence in keeping personnel files, to avoid embarrassment for when it comes out.

Source: entrepreneur.com

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