Q & A – Where should employee personnel files be kept?

Q: Where should employee personnel files be kept?

A: Employers are responsible for the safekeeping of employee personnel records to protect them from fire, burglary or misuse.  Usually, employee personnel files are kept in fire-proof, locked cabinets in the HR Department.  The file cabinets should be locked at night and during the day when HR staff are not in the area.  Some employers retain personnel records electronically. If this is the case, access should be limited.  Publicly traded companies may have additional recordkeeping responsibilities based on the Sarbanes Oxley Act of 2002.  Please contact your corporate legal counsel or internal audit committee for further information.