Employee Records

Policy ID

032-0015

Effective Date

Friday, December 1, 2006

Division

Finance & Administration

Office of Primary Responsibility

Office of Human Resources (HR)

Summary of Policy

This policy regards Dartmouth's adherence to New Hampshire state law pertaining to an employee's right to inspect his or her personnel file and furnish a copy of all or any part of that file.

Affected Parties

All Groups

Policy Statement

Dartmouth College
Employment Policies and Procedures
Policy last updated:  Dec 1, 2006

Applies to: All employees

New Hampshire state law regarding employee information states that, "upon request, every employer must provide a reasonable opportunity for an employee to inspect his or her personnel file and furnish a copy of all or any part of that file."  In this context "an employee" refers to a person who is either currently employed or has been previously employed by Dartmouth.

If, after inspecting his or her personnel file, the employee disagrees with information contained in the file—and the College and employee cannot agree upon removing or correcting the disputed information—then the employee may submit a written statement explaining his or her version of the information.  Together with evidence supporting such a version, that statement shall be maintained as part of the employee's personnel file and included in its transmission.

The law does not require disclosing information in a requesting employee's personnel file:

1) if he or she is the subject of an investigation at the time of the request and if disclosure of the information would prejudice law enforcement;   

2) the information relates to a government security investigation or contains records that are privileged or confidential by law; or  recommendations, peer evaluations, or notes not generated or created by the employer.

The Office of Human Resources maintains an employee record for each employee.  Typical documents kept in that record include an application for employment, resume, letters of reference, performance reviews, letters of disciplinary action, authorizations of change in salary or rate, copies of employment verifications, copies of requests for changes of address or name, and other pertinent correspondence to or from the employee. While departments and supervisors may maintain similar records regarding employees, originals of any of the above documentation should be sent to the Office of Human Resources.

Definitions or Regulations: 

Personnel files maintained by the employer are not restricted to the types of documents listed above. They include files that are maintained on the local, departmental level unless the records are exempt from disclosure under RSA 275:56 III, or are otherwise privileged or confidential by law. Files do not include recommendations, peer evaluations, or notes not generated by the employer but could include e-mails or notes written by a supervisor that evaluate performance or record discipline.

Procedure: 

Employees should contact the Office of Human Resources to inspect and/or correct their personnel files.

Documentation: 

New Hampshire RSA 275:56 and Labor Regulations 802.09.
Individual documentation in support of correction.