Can employers legally share all staff time sheets on-line in our shared officer folder?

I’m concerned about staff other than my supervisor having access to my leave.  We all know when people are in the office, but isn’t it my personal business whether I let my co-workers know if I’m out for a medical condition(s)? Thanks.

Posted 11-10-2015

Rita Risser replies:

Medical information is protected by a variety of state and federal laws, including HIPAA. It is supposed to be kept confidential. If the time sheets simply show that you are using sick time, that information probably is not protected. But if it shows the reason for sick time (e.g. chemotherapy) that could well be a violation of law. An employer should not be keeping track of that sort of information in time sheets, whether or not they are on shared folders. That sort of information should be with Human Resources in a confidential medical file.

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About the Author:

Rita M. Risser Chai is the founder of Fair Measures. An attorney in California for 20 years and now an attorney in Hawaii, she authored the Prentice Hall book, Stay Out of Court! The Manager’s Guide to Preventing Employee Lawsuits. She developed most of the curriculum used by Fair Measures, created the firm’s first website praised in HR Magazine, and wrote numerous articles on employment law including one on best practice harassment prevention training published in the magazine of the American Society for Training and Development (now ATD). She taught Law and Human Resources at the University of California, Santa Cruz, for eight years, and has presented four times at the annual conventions of the Hawaii Society of Human Resource Management.