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Personnel Records

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How Long Should I Keep Personnel Records?

Retaining employee and personnel-related records is crucial for preserving documentation in case evidence is needed in a related lawsuit. The IRS may also request specific information regarding employees if they are being audited.

Suggested Retention Duration for Select Personnel Records

Document Type Suggested Minimum Retention
Employee accident reports and claims 7 years
Affirmative Action Plan 1 year after plan expiration
Administrative Correspondence* 3 years
*(Important memos, emails and other correspondence regarding strategy, services, programs, policies, procedures, planning and other such materials)
General/Routine Correspondence 1 year
Legal Correspondence regarding employees Permanently
Employee evaluations 3 years following termination
Related contracts 7 years following expiration
Employee demographic records 3 years
Employee applications 3 years from application date, hiring or related personnel action (whichever is latest)
Garnishments 7 years
I-9 forms 3 years after hiring date
Organizational charts Permanently
OSHA logs 5 years
OSHA medical exam records and related documents 30 years from termination or resignation
Personnel files for terminated employees 7 years following their termination
Petty cash vouchers 3 years
Employee expense reports and related reimbursement vouchers 5 years
Polygraph test results and records 3 years
Timekeeping sheets, books, cards, etc. 7 years
Payroll withholding tax documents 7 years
Workers compensation documentation and claims 10 years after final settlement or first closure
Pension and retirement records Permanently
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Other Documents

You can learn about suggested retention schedules by consulting similar tables provided in the corresponding section:

Important note: These lists were written to serve as a general guideline. Consult your CPA or a New York business attorney for specific advice on best practices and legal compliance requirements.

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