HR Record Retention Requirements

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France

Document

Retention Period

Beginning of Retention Period

Legal Reference

EMPLOYMENT RECORDS

Contracts (new hire agreements, severance, etc.)

Minimum 5 years

From contract termination

Art. 2224, French Civil Code; No legal obligation but rule of prevention in regard to prescription period (prescription for discrimination litigation can reach 20 years maximum, Art. 2232, French Civil Code)

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

Data on working hours, accounting and on-call duties: Minimum 1 year; Data on working days for flat-rate pay agreements (“convention de forfait”): Minimum 3 years; Registration of work and rest periods: Duration of employment

From date of drafting or record

Art. D3171-16, French Labour Code; CNIL recommendation n°2005-002 (Simplified Norm n°46)

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

Maximum duration of employment

From date of collection

CNIL recommendation n°2005-002 (Simplified Norm n°46)

Data and personnel files

Minimum 5 years

From date of record

Art. 2224, French Civil Code. No legal obligation but rule of prevention in regard to prescription period

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

Minimum 5 years

From date of departure

Art. R1221-26, French Labour Code

Collective bargaining/union

Maximum 6 months after the date when the legal mandate for the union/staff representative ceases to exist

From start of period where union/staff representative exists

Art. L. 2411-5, French Labour Code

Background checks and drug tests

Background checks: Only until purpose of data collection is fulfilled; Drug tests: Tests which don't lead to disciplinary sanction: Only for duration required by purpose of test (investigations); Tests which lead to disciplinary sanction (other than dismissal): Maximum 3 years after notification of sanction; Tests which lead to dismissal: Minimum 1 year from termination notice (if termination challenged retain through period of litigation)

From creation of record

Art. 5, GDPR; Art. L. 1471-1, French Labour Code; Art. L. 1332-5, French Labour Code

Acknowledgements, policy agreements and required notices

Varies depending on context

n/a

n/a

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

Applicants and hired employees: Maximum 2 years

From the last contact with the person involved

CNIL recommendation n° 02-017

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

Biometric data: Maximum duration of employment contract; On-line traffic data and identification data of specific website’s users: 1 year (minimum and maximum); Camera recordings: Maximum 1 month (for data processing). Can be archived for unlimited period in the event of criminal prosecution

General: From date of collection; Camera recordings: From date of access or transfer of the recordings

CNIL unique authorizations n°AU-007, AU-008, AU-019; Art. L34-1, French Post and Electronic Communications Code; Art. 6 II LCEN (Act for confidence in the digital economy n°2004-575 21/06/2004); Art. L252-3, French Internal Security Code CNIL guidelines

Miscellaneous 1

Data relating to employee or temporary worker in regard to identification, administration, organization, social activities and staff representation: Maximum duration of employment

From date of collection

CNIL recommendation n°2005-002 (Simplified Norm n°46)

Miscellaneous 2

Data related to the use of the Internet of the Company (connection log): Maximum 6 months

From connection to a website

CNIL Guidelines ("Les outils informatiques au travail")

BENEFIT/PENSION/EQUITY RECORDS

Benefits (plan documents, enrollment records)

Social and cultural benefits: Maximum 2 years

Following the provision of the benefit

CNIL recommendation n°2006-230 (Exoneration n°10)

Pension and retirement records

Minimum 5 years (including proof of pension affiliation and contributions “ARRCO” and “AGIRC”)

From date of drafting

Art. 2224, French Civil Code. No legal obligation but rule of prevention in regard to prescription period

Equity records

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PAYROLL/WAGE/TAX RECORDS

Payroll and wage data (payslips, etc.)

Electronic pay slips: Minimum 5 years and duty to ensure availability for minimum of 50 years or until employee has reached age 68

From pay date

Art. L. 3243-4, French Labour Code; Art. D. 3243-8, French Labour Code; El Khomri Law

Tax records

Minimum 3 years

From the end of the year the tax is due

Art. L. 169, Tax Procedure Book

Miscellaneous 1

Social charges owed to French Administration based on salary: Minimum 3 years

Day after end of civil year to which records relate

Art. L. 244-3, French Social Security Code

MEDICAL/SAFETY/LEAVE RECORDS

Leave (family, medical, etc.)

Sick leave: Maximum duration of employment; Family leave: Maximum 5 years

From date of collection

CNIL recommendation n°2005-002 (Simplified Norm n°46); CNIL recommendation n°02-001 (Simplified Norm n°42)

Injury and illness incident reports

Data concerning Labour Inspectorate, Health Safety and Working Conditions Committee (“CHSCT”), or industrial accident declarations: Minimum 5 years

From creation of record

Art. D4711-3, French Labour Code

Medical records

Generally not permitted; Work-related medical exams related to hazardous chemical agents: Minimum 50 years; Work-related medical exams related to pathogen biological agents: Minimum 10 years

From date of employees’ last exposure

Art. D4624-46 et seq., French Labour Code; No specific retention period but rule of prevention in regard to prescription period: Art. L1142-28, French Public Health Code; Art. R4412-54 et seq., French Labour Code Art. R4426-8 et seq., French Labour Code

Hazardous material and other exposure records

Exposure sheet of employees who worked in dangerous conditions or whose health has been under threat (including asbestos dust, hyperbaric environment, radiation, ionizing radiation and/pr artificial optical radiation): Minimum 2 years; Register of employees exposed to 3rd and 4th category biological agents: Minimum 10 years

From date which occupational disease was first diagnosed or date of employees’ last exposure

Arts. L4121-3-1, French Labour Code; No specific retention period but rule of prevention in regard to prescription period: Arts. L431-2, L461-1 et seq., French Social Security Code; Art. D4121-9, French Labour Law; Art. R4426-1 to R4426-4, French Labour Code; Art. R4451-57 to R4451-60, French Labour Code

Miscellaneous 1

Floor plans and directions – “plan particulier de sécurité et de protection de la santé”: Minimum 5 years

From date of work receipt

Art. R4532-74, French Labour Code

Miscellaneous 2

Records of noise levels and mechanical vibration levels: Minimum 10 years

From date of evaluation

Arts. R4433-3 and R4444-3, French Labour Code

Miscellaneous 3

Necessary data for emergency medical care, individual reintegration plans, individual treatment agreements, degree of incapacity for work, required workplace adaptations: Maximum duration of employment

From date of collection

CNIL recommendation n°2005-002 (Simplified Norm n°46)

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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