Storing and retaining employment records

Length of time to store records
By Colin Gibson
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 11/14/2012

Question: How long are employers required by law to retain employment records? Is it good practice to retain some types of records for a longer period??

Answer: Rules regarding the retention of employment records are found in the employment standards and privacy statutes applicable to the jurisdiction and sector (public or private) in which the employer operates.

Minimum retention periods under employment standards legislation differ by jurisdiction, and by type of information. Some jurisdictions require only payroll records to be retained (B.C., Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick), while others have additional requirements and provide specific details of the information that must be retained (Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario). The minimum retention periods range from two to five years. Also, whether the clock starts when the information is gathered or when the employment relationship is terminated differs by jurisdiction and by type of information.