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What employee "time" records must you keep by law?

Almost every day we see a story in the media where an employer is being fined for not keeping accurate Employee Records. These stories typically relate to a lack of or incomplete Wage and Time Records, and/or Employment Agreements in addition to incorrect payments.

The Employment Relations and Holidays Acts require employers to maintain wage, time, holiday and leave records for their employees.

Employee records must be made available to employees, their unions and Labour Inspectors if they ask for them.

They can be kept in electronic or paper files but they must be kept for at least six years.

While the list of what records you must keep is extensive (see below *) there are specific records you must keep which relate directly to the time your employees have (or have not) worked.

These include:

Time Records must include:

  • the employee’s name.
  • the hours worked each day, including start time, finish time and any non-paid breaks taken, and days of employment in each pay period.

Holiday and leave records must include:

  • the name of the employee.
  • the days on which an employee works, if the information is relevant to entitlement or payment under the Holidays Act 2003.
  • the dates any annual holiday, sick or bereavement leave was taken.
  • the number of hours worked on any public holiday.
  • the date on which the employee became entitled to any alternative holiday for any public holiday worked
  • the dates and payment of any public holiday or alternative holiday on which the employee did not work, but for which the employee had an entitlement to payment

* If you would like a copy of our "Guide to Keeping Accurate Employee Records" simply email [email protected] and we will send you copy or use the chat bubble in the right corner.

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