Recording details of employees – rights and responsibilities of both employee and employer

Posted on 29 August 2012

As individuals, we are often asked to divulge our personal details to either employers or to professional organisations such as financial institutions and medical practitioners.

In the case of employment, a long term association is formed and over many years, a very long record of your personal details may be stored with your employer. What records must an employer keep with regard to their employee and what right do employees have to access records the employer keeps of them?

Every employee has the right to receive a pay slip. This must display the name of the business as well as their ABN, employee name and classification, the date of payment and the date range it applies to, gross pay including overtime, deductions including tax, employee superannuation contributions and any other amounts which have been deducted. At the end of each financial year, your employer must supply you with a Group Certificate (PAYG Summary) which will summarise all payments made to you by that particular employer over the financial year. If you work for multiple businesses, each one must supply you with a Group Certificate.

Employers must ensure that they keep employee records including duration of employment and wages information for a period of seven years. This information should be kept in an easy to access, plain English manner to enable it to be inspected easily should you be audited. Employee records should also include:

  • the date the employee began employment with your company
  • the type of employment i.e. full-time, part-time or casual
  • whether the employment is permanent, temporary or casual
  • the employee’s pay rate – gross and net amounts, deductions from gross amount
  • loadings, monetary allowances, bonuses, entitlements, penalty rates (and hours this rate applies to) and incentive-based payments
  • copies of agreements made with your employee regarding agreed working hours, flexible arrangements
  • promotions, copies of contribution and achievements, performance development plans, disciplinary notices, termination

Section 3.42 of the Fair Work Regulation 2009 requires employers to make a copy of an employee’s record available for inspection and copying on request by the employee or former employee. Where the employee record is kept at the premises at which the employee works or the former employee worked, the employer must:

  • make the copy available at the premises within 3 business days after receiving the request; or
  • post a copy of the employee record to the employee or former employee within 14 days after receiving the request.

In circumstance where the employee record is not kept at the premises at which the employee works or the former employee worked, the employer must, as soon as practicable after receiving the request:

  • make the copy available at the premises; or
  • post a copy of the employee record to the employee or former employee.

If you are experiencing problems relating to any of the above aspects of the employment relationship, contact Dooley and Associates and one of our experienced Employment Lawyers will be happy to assist you.