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Labor Code §1198.5 currently provides that a California employer must permit the inspection of employee personnel files at "reasonable intervals." Labor Code §1198.5, however, does not specify a time limit for compliance, a penalty for noncompliance, nor does it address whether or not a former employee maintains such inspection rights. Assembly Bill 2674 eliminates all of these deficiencies.
Effective January 1, 2013, revised California Labor Code §1198.5 provides in pertinent part that:
For current employees, the employer must provide a copy to the employee or make the records available for inspection (as the employee requests) at the place where the employee reports to work, or other mutually-agreeable location. For former employees, the employer must provide a copy to the former employee, or make the records available for inspection (as requested by the employee) at the location where the employer stores the records, unless a different location is mutually agreed upon in writing.2 If the employer desires to mail the employee a copy, the employer may request reimbursement of the actual copy charges and postal mailing costs.
Unless there is a pending lawsuit relating to a personnel matter, the employer will only be required to comply with one request for inspection, or copying, per year by a former employee, and only up to 50 requests per month by representative(s) of such employees.
The inspection and copy requirements enumerated above do not apply to:
In light of the new laws, California employers should:
1 Both the employee and employer may agree in writing to extend the time to a maximum of 35 days.
2 If a former employee was terminated for a violation of law (or an employer policy) involving harassment or workplace violence, the employer may make the records available for inspection at another location so long as that location is a reasonable driving distance from the former employee’s residence.
Tags: personnel files
Posted In: Employment Law News
Blog Categories:Business Law Bulletin
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Located in Los Angeles, California, the Law Office of Melissa C. Marsh handles business law and corporation law matters as a lawyer for clients throughout Los Angeles including Burbank, Sherman Oaks, Studio City, Valley Village, North Hollywood, Woodland Hills, Hollywood, West LA as well as Riverside County, San Fernando, Ventura County, and Santa Clarita. Attorney Melissa C. Marsh has considerable experience handling business matters both nationally and internationally. We routinely assist our clients with incorporation, forming a California corporation, forming a California llc, partnership, annual minutes, shareholder meetings, director meetings, getting a taxpayer ID number (EIN), buying a business, selling a business, commercial lease review, employee disputes, independent contractors, construction, and personal matters such as preparing a will, living trust, power of attorney, health care directive, and more.