HR Record Retention Requirements

Canada - Summary Chart

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CANADA


DOCUMENTS

RETENTION PERIOD
(minimum and/or maximum)

BEGINNING OF  RETENTION PERIOD

LEGAL REFERENCE

EMPLOYMENT RECORDS

Contracts (new hire agreements, severance, etc.)

Longer of length of employment plus 3 or 6 years from end of last tax year to which records relate (In most cases, length of employment plus 3 years will be long enough to cover  tax period, but not in cases where individual worked for only a few years)

From end of last tax year to which record relates

Canada Labour Code;
Canada Labour Standards Regulations;
Income Tax Act

Time records (work hours, rest periods, vacation/sick/holiday, etc.)

Longer of length of employment plus 3  or 6 years from end of last tax year to which record relates

From end of last tax year to which record relates

Income Tax Act;
Canada Labour Code;
Canada Labour Standards Regulations

Performance records (performance reviews, promotions/demotions, licenses/certifications, investigations, disciplinary actions, etc.)

3 years

From end of employment

Canada Labour Code;
Canada Labour Standards Regulations

Data and personnel files

General: 3 years (longer if contains records required for tax purposes)

From end of employment

Canada Labour Code;
Canada Labour Standards Regulations

Government verification records (work papers, immigration, eligibility to work, etc.)

3 years

From end of employment

Canada Labour Code;
Canada Labour Standards Regulations

Collective bargaining/union

Permanently (best practice as can be relevant for policy grievances)

From creation

Best practice

Background checks and drug tests

Applicants who are hired: Maximum 2 years from date of hire (best practice based on privacy law)

Applicants who are not hired: Maximum 2 years from date not to hire (best practice to cover limitation periods under human rights and general limitations acts)

From date of hire or date of decision

Human Rights legislation

Acknowledgements, policy agreements and required notices

If contains no personal information, retain based on business need

N/A

N/A

Recruitment (interview notes, resumes/CVs, reference checks, etc.)

Applicants who are hired: Maximum 2 years from date of hire (best practice based on privacy law)

Applicants who are not hired: Maximum 2 years from date not to hire (best practice to cover limitation periods under human rights and general limitations acts)

From date of hire or date of decision

Human Rights legislation

Tracking/recordings (biometric, geo-location, online tracking, camera recordings, etc.)

Retain only for limited time necessary for the purposes for which data was collected

N/A

Best practice

Promotions, Demotions, Transfers, Layoffs

Promotions, Demotions, Transfers:  Longer of length of employment plus 2 years

Layoffs:  Longer of length of employment plus 2 years or 6 years from end of last tax year to which record relates

From termination

Human Rights Legislation

Job postings with no personal information

Minimum 2 years from last use, depends on business need

N/A

Best practice

Banking information

Length of employment

N/A

Best practice

BENEFIT/PENSION/EQUITY RECORDS

Benefits (plan documents, enrollment records)

6 years

From end of last tax year to which records relate

Income Tax Act

Pension records

Retain permanently

From creation

Best Practice

Equity records

Length of employment plus 2 years or end of period covered by employment equity plan to which records relate

From creation

Federal Employment Equity Act

Employee Share Ownership Plan Documents

6 years or permanently (if no personal information)

From end of last tax year to which records relate

Income Tax Act

Individual Beneficiaries' Records

Until final payment has been made to plan beneficiaries

From final payment

Federal Pension Act

PAYROLL/WAGE/TAX RECORDS

 

 

Payroll and wage data (payslips, etc.)

6 years (including Commission reports, earning cards and payroll journals)

From end of last tax year to which record relates

Income Tax Act

Tax records

6 years

From end of last tax year to which record relates

Income Tax Act

Expense Records

6 years

From end of last tax year to which record relates

Income Tax Act

MEDICAL/SAFETY/LEAVE RECORDS

Leave (family, medical, etc.)

Longer of length of employment plus 3 years or 6 years

From end of last tax year to which record relates

Income Tax Act;
Canada Labour Code;
Canada Labour Standards Regulations

Injury and illness incident reports

Annual report or police reports regarding accident: 10 years

Records of minor injuries, hazardous occurrences and written reports: 10 years

First Aid Records: 2 years from date of entry

Reports regarding accident: Following submission of report to  Minister

Records of minor injuries, hazardous occurrences and written reports: Following hazardous occurrence

First Aid Records: From date of entry

Canada Health and Safety Regulations

Medical records

3 years

From termination

Canada Labour Standard Regulations

Hazardous material and other exposure records

Varies depending on material/exposure record

N/A

N/A

 

Ultimate Software's HR Compliance Assist team relies on a network of internal and external compliance experts and lawyers to provide clients with best practices and recommendations on topics such as HR document retention, employee data privacy, and HR electronic records. HR Compliance Assist also provides local compliance monitoring and alert services in select countries where Ultimate Software's customers have employees. HR Compliance Assist is a service exclusively available to Ultimate Software customers.

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