Personnel Records Retention

The following retention periods are recommended for specific personnel documents:

Personnel Document Retention Period
Applications/Resumes (employed) 6 years after last action
Applications/Resumes (not hired) 6 years after selection process completion
Status/Change of Status Forms 6 years after updated
Job Descriptions 6 years after updated
Employee Performance Appraisals/Evaluations 6 years after termination
Retirement Correspondence 6 years after last action
Insurance Enrollment Notices 6 years after last action
Position Information Questionnaires & Reclassification Requests 6 years after updated
Leave Reports 6 years
Request for Leave Records 6 years
Time Cards 6 years
Payroll Records 5 years
Job Announcements 6 years after selection process completion
Medical Records Related to or Required by Employer 6 years after last action
I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification 3 years after hire or 1 year after termination, whichever is later
Lawsuits or Actions for Recovery of Overtime, Damages, Fees, or Penalties 2 years after the accrual of such claim for relief


  • If there is any legal action regarding an employee or former employee initiated by anyone, all records regarding the employee or former employee should be retained until the completion of the legal action or the end of the retention period, whichever is later.
  • Use of personnel records may extend the retention period for those records. To allow for the possibility of a defamation case regarding any personnel files, the retention periods for those records should be changed to six years after last action. This retention period would prevent the agency from disposing of the records until six years after the last action; i.e. reference for an ex-employee; ex-employee requesting information from his/her file; termination of employment.
  • Always check with legal counsel before destroying documents regarding employees who have been involved in legal action.


NDCC 14-02.4-19
NDCC 34-01-13
NDAC 27-02-02-01
Fair Labor Standards Act
Code of Federal Regulations: 26 CFR 31.6001.1; 8 CFR 274a.2
Attorney General's Office
ITD - Records Management
Human Resource Management Services, or 701.328.3290