Records Open to Employees

The Law

Chapter 103.13, Wisconsin statutes - Provides that a past or present employee has the right to view and copy their personnel records at least two times each calendar year.

If an employee wishes to have a copy of the records, the employer may charge a reasonable fee for providing such copies, which may not exceed the actual cost of reproduction.

The employer may ask that an employee make these requests in writing. The employer then has seven (7) working days to provide the employee with an opportunity to inspect the documents.

If an employee is involved in a current grievance against an employer, the employee may have his or her union representative, or any other designated person, inspect those records that may have a bearing on the resolution of the grievance.

What records are considered open to employees and former employees?

The right to inspect "personnel documents" extends to documents which are used, or which have been used, to determine qualifications for employment, promotion, transfer, additional compensation, termination or other disciplinary action, and medical records.

What exceptions are there to the requirements of the Open Personnel Records Law?

The right of the employee to inspect (or have copies of) his or her personnel records does not apply to:

How can an employee act to correct inaccuracies in the personnel records?

If an employee disagrees with any information contained in the records, the employer and employee may agree to correct or remove the information. If agreement cannot be reached, the employee may submit a written statement explaining his or her position. The employer is required to attach this statement to the disputed item, and release it whenever that disputed item is released to a third party.

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