Generally Accepted Record Retention Guidelines

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1 Document Name /Type Accident reports and claims (settled cases) Accommodation requests Accounts payable ledgers and schedules Accounts receivable ledgers and schedules Ads and Notices of overtime opportunities Ads and Notices of promotion opportunities Age certificates (minors only) Apprenticeship program records Aptitude tests Audit reports of accountants Bank reconciliations Bank statements Basic employee information Basic payroll information Capital stock and bond records Cash books Certificates and notices of Wage and Hour Administrator Chart of accounts Checks (cancelled, see exceptions below) Checks (cancelled for important payments, i.e. taxes, purchases of property, special contracts, etc.) Collective bargaining agreements Construction documents Contracts and leases (expired) Contracts and leases still in effect Correspondence (general) Correspondence (legal or important) Dates FMLA leave is taken Deeds, mortgages, bills of sale, titles Demotion records Depreciation schedules Generally Accepted Record Retention Guidelines To guide our clients in minimizing risks, here s a list of generally accepted, reasonable time periods recommended for retaining business records. 1 of 6 Recommended Retention after record is made after record is made after record is made Duration of employment 2 years (records made solely for completing Form EEO-2 or similar reports must be kept for one year from date of report from personnel action to which test relates 4 years after termination after record is made after record is made from end of agreement Expiration plus from end of leave from date of action

2 Duplicate deposit slips EEOC Records Electronic fund transfer documents Employee benefits plan records Employment contracts Ex employee personnel records Employment applications (regular) Expense analyses and expense distribution schedules Exposure records Financial statements (end of year, other months optional) Form EEO 1 General and private ledgers (and end of year trial balance) Hours of FMLA Leave Hours worked in tipped & non tipped positions Job advertisements Job requests given to employment agencies I 9s (after termination) Insurance policies (expired) Inventories of products, materials, supplies Invoices to customers Invoices from vendors Journals Layoff, reduction in force, & recall records Leases Licenses Loan documents, notes Medical certifications Medical examinations Merit, incentive system records Until final disposition of the charge Duration of plan plus one year Expiration plus Duration of employment plus 30 years As long as current after leave ends after record is made after record is made from time of request from date of action (see Contracts) from date record is made after termination (Note: OSHA says legally required exams must be kept for 30 years after termination.) 2 years from date records is made 2 of 6

3 Minute books of directors and stockholders, including by laws and charter Notes receivable ledgers and schedules Notices of FMLA leave OSHA Form (Log and Summary of Occupational Injuries & Illnesses) Option records (expired) Payroll records and summaries, pensions, payroll, taxes Petty cash vouchers Personality tests Personnel records Physical exams Physical inventory tags Plant cost ledgers Pre employment tests Premium payments of employee benefits Promotion records Property records Property appraisals by outside appraisers Property records including costs, depreciation reserves, end of year trial balances, depreciation schedules, blueprints and plans Purchase orders (yours) Purchase orders (theirs) Rates of pay Records of disputes and about designation of FMLA References after record is made Resumes (after termination) Receiving sheets Requisitions Sales records Scrap and salvage records (inventories, sales, etc.) Subsidiary ledgers Summary Plan Description data Supplementary payroll data Steno notebooks/word processor files/disks Tax returns and worksheets, reports, documents, relating to income tax liability from end of leave 5 years from personnel action to which tests relates from making the record from personnel action to which test relates from date of test from end of FMLA Leave from date of action after record is made after record is made 6 years 2 years after record is made 3 of 6

4 Time books/cards (for exempt & non exempt employees) Time cards/sheets after record is made Tips reported by employees 4 years from the later of tax due date or payment date 4 years from the later of tax due date or payment 4 years from later of tax due date or payment date Trade mark registrations Training selection records Transfer records from date of action Voucher register and schedules Vouchers for payments to vendors, employees (including allowances and reimbursement of employees, officers, for travel and entertainment expenses) W 4 forms 4 years Welfare & pension reports 6 years Worker's' comp. documents 1s Written training agreements Duration of training program Title VII (discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, or gender, among others) Personnel records (including resumes, applications, layoffs, promotions, demotions, transfers, and compensation info) Discrimination charges (including records of the party making the charge and other employees/applicants in the same or similar positions) Apprenticeship records (including applicant names and addresses, dates of application, and applicant's sex, minority group, and test scores) Age Discrimination in Employment Act (known as ADEA; discrimination based on age). Keep payroll records for Three years and Personnel records (including for hiring, termination, and promotion; results from employment tests; job advertisements; and training records) Employee benefit plan records Personnel records for temporary positions Until the charge is resolved or for one year after the employee leaves 2 years or duration of apprenticeship program, whichever is longer from date of the last personnel action At least longer than duration of plan 90 days after the final personnel action 4 of 6

5 Records relating to any legal action Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) Keep general information (including employee name, address, and ZIP code; and payroll records, including daily and weekly hours worked, pay rates, total daily and weekly wages, weekly overtime, deductions, and date of payment) FMLA leave records (including dates taken, copies of notices of leave, premium payments, certifications, and records of any disputes) Occupational Safety and Health Act Form 300 Required medical exam reports Records used to monitor exposure to hazardous materials Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) records (including employee name, address, and ZIP code; and payroll records, including daily and weekly hours worked, pay rates, and total daily and weekly wages) Timecards, wage rate tables, and work schedules All payroll related records Equal Pay Act Records regarding workweek definition, number of hours that each employee works, pay rates, total wages, and total deductions Collective bargaining agreements Timecards/time sheets, records covering merit systems, seniority systems, and wage rate tables Rehabilitation Act Personnel records of disabled applicants and employees Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) records, including Supporting documents of plan or reports Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA). I 9 Forms Davis Bacon Act, Service Contract Act and Walsh Healey Public Contracts Act all Payroll records Basic employment and wage records Employee information (including separate health/medical records) Sarbanes Oxley Act. Any records relevant to legal actions Until the case is resolved (In any event, you should keep these records at least seven years after resolution of any litigation 5 years 30 days after employment terminates 2 years after expiration 2 years 6 years after filing date from date of hire or after termination, whichever is later after completion of contract 2 years from last entry from last entry after an investigation begins 5 of 6

6 Although some laws may not apply to you, most probably do. Compliance with their requirements may be mandatory. Use this checklist and develop a system for continuing to monitor your compliance -- for example, check your I-9s and record retention annually. Remember that these are just guidelines. Apply them reasonably to minimize the risks in your own circumstances. 6 of 6

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