HR Record Retention Requirements

United Kingdom - Summary Chart

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UNITED KINGDOM


DOCUMENTS

RETENTION PERIOD

START OF THE RETENTION PERIOD

RELEVANT LAW REFERENCE

EMPLOYMENT/PENSION RECORDS


Employment contract, including personnel and training records, written particulars of employment, changes to terms and conditions

Maximum 6 years after employment
ceases

The date that the documents are created

Section 5 Limitation Act 1980 and Data Protection Act 1998


Identification documents of foreign nationals (ensuing from the obligation to retain copies of documents used to perform immigration checks)

Minimum 2 years

The date of termination of employment

Article 6(1)(b) Immigration Restrictions on Employment) Order 2007/3290


Business data and documents concerning pension schemes and related subjects (ensuing from obligation to retain records relating to an approved pension scheme or a statutory pension scheme, including accounts and actuarial valuation reports relating to the scheme)
Administration regarding pension scheme (by pension administrator and pension association)

Minimum 6 years

From the end of the year in which the accounts were signed

Regulation 18 Registered Pension Scheme (Provision of Information) Regulations 2006 (SI 2006/567)


Pension plans and schemes, career and talent development programmes, diversity programmes, other HR policies (e.g. alcohol and drugs policy, HIV/AIDS policy, personnel handbook), social plans

Minimum 6 years

From the end of the year in which the accounts were signed

Regulation 18 Registered Pension Scheme (Provision of Information) Regulations 2006 (SI 2006/567)

PAYROLL AND SALARY RECORDS


Records for the purposes of tax returns including wage/salary records, records of overtime, bonuses and expenses

Minimum 6 years

The end of the assessment period

Section 12B Taxes Management Act 1970

Unincorporated businesses to retain payroll and wage records

Minimum 5 years


After 31 January following the year of assessment

Section 12B Taxes Management Act 1970

Payroll and wage records

Minimum 6 years


The financial year in which payments are made

Schedule 18, paragraph 21, Finance Act 1998

Maternity pay records

Minimum 3 years

The end of the tax year in which the maternity pay period ends


Regulation 26, Statutory Maternity Pay (General) Regulations 1986 (SI 1986/1960)


Pay As You Earn (“PAYE”) records, (the system for collecting

income tax and national insurance contributions from employees’ salaries).
The relevant records include wages sheets, deductions working sheets and calculations of the PAYE income of the employees and relevant payments to the employees.

Minimum 3 years

The end of the financial year to which the records relate

Regulation 97 Income Tax (Pay As You Earn) Regulations 2003 (SI 2003/2682)

MEDICAL/HEALTH RECORDS


Work-related medical examinations related to hazardous substances (ensuing from the obligation on an employer who is monitoring employees under health surveillance to maintain the health record for each employee)

Minimum 40 years

The date of the last entry made in the record

Regulation 10(5), Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002, SI 2002/2677


List of employees who have worked under dangerous conditions or whose health has otherwise been under threat (ensuing from the obligation on an employer to monitor exposure of employees to substances hazardous to health to maintain a record of the monitoring, or summary thereof)

Minimum 5 years
Unless the record is representative of the personal exposures of identifiable
employees, in which case 40 years.

The date of the last entry made in the record

Regulation 10(5), Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002, SI 2002/2677


Register of employees who work with 3rd and 4th category biological agents

Minimum 40 years

The date of the last entry made in the record

Schedule 3, paragraph 4, Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002, SI 2002/2677


Lists/register of employees who have been exposed to asbestos dust,
including health records of each employee

Minimum 40 years

The date of the last entry made in the record

Regulation 22 Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012, SI 2012/632


Medical records of employees who have possibly been exposed to ionizing radiation

Minimum 40 years

The date of the last entry made in the record

Regulation 10(5), Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002, SI 2002/2677

TYPE OF DOCUMENTS LIKELY TO BE ALSO SUBJECT TO A MAXIMUM RETENTION PERIOD BASED ON DATA PROTECTION LAWS


Data of rejected job applicants (e.g. application letters, CVs, references, certificates of good conduct, job interview notes, assessment and psychological test results)

Maximum 6 years

The date the document is received
or created

Guidance from The Information Commissioner Employment Practices Code Part 1: recruitment and selection (1.7.1)

Data concerning a temporary worker

Maximum 6 years


The date the document is received
or created

Section 5 Limitation Act 1980 and Data Protection Act 1998

Reports on employee performance review meetings and assessment interviews

Maximum 6 years


The date the document is received
or created

Section 5 Limitation Act 1980 and Data Protection Act 1998

Data concerning pension and early retirement

Maximum 6 years

The date that the documents
are created


Section 5 Limitation Act 1980 and Data Protection Act 1998


Registration of work and rest periods (in appropriate format)
Working time opt-out forms
Records to show compliance with the Working Time Regulations 1998
Records in relation to hours worked and payments made to workers

Minimum 2 years

The date that the records are made

Regulations 5 and 9 Working Time Regulations 1998
(SI 1998/1833)


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

Maximum 6 years

The date that the documents
are created

Section 5 Limitation Act 1980 and Data Protection Act 1998

Camera recordings

Images should not be kept for longer than strictly necessary to meet the organisation’s purposes in recording them.

The date that the records are made

Fifth data protection principle, Data Protection Act 1998

 

 


Led by PeopleDoc’s Chief Legal & Compliance Officer, the HR Compliance Assist team relies on a network of internal and external compliance experts and lawyers, including the global law firm Morgan Lewis, 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 PeopleDoc’s customers have employees. HR Compliance Assist is a service exclusively available to PeopleDoc customers.

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