Do we have to give a former employee copies of her paystubs?

A terminated employee is requesting us to create and provide her with duplicates of all of her paystubs throughout the course of her employment. Also, she is requesting a copy of the authorization form she signed when she enrolled in the health plan. What are we required to provide?

Posted  06-09-2010

Ann Kiernan replies:

Every state has its own rules on the subject, but your state, California, is particularly strict. According to the California Department of Industrial Relations:

Your payroll records must be made available to you upon reasonable request, which request must be complied with by your employer as soon as practicable, but no later than 21 calendar days from the date you make such request. Effective January 1, 2003, a failure by the employer to permit a current or former employee to inspect or copy his or her payroll records within the 21 day period entitles the current or former employee to recover a $750.00 penalty from the employer in a civil action brought before a court of competent jurisdiction.

So, you had better get those payroll records ready! And since you have to provide the payroll records, you might as well make a copy of the health plan enrollment form, too.


Information here is correct at the time it is posted. Case decisions cited here may be reversed. Please do not rely on this information without consulting an attorney first.


About the Author:

Ann Kiernan has litigated claims of wrongful discharge and discrimination before state and federal courts and administrative matters before the New Jersey Division on Civil Rights, the National Labor Relations Board and the Equal Opportunity Employment Commission, representing both employers and employees. Ms. Kiernan co-hosted The Employee Rights Forum, a weekly radio call-in show reaching up to a half-million listeners in the New York metropolitan area, and her articles on employment law have been published in many books and magazines. Both as a firm partner and as a director, Ms. Kiernan gained solid experience in management and human resources compliance. She has worked with Fair Measures since 1997.