The information provided below highlights some of the more important recordkeeping requirements that apply to most employers in Alabama, regardless of industry. There may be other state recordkeeping requirements that are specific to certain businesses or industries. Employers that think they have such special requirements should inquire with the Alabama Department of Industrial Relations. In addition, there are many federal statutes that require employers to keep certain records related to employment.
While this is a time-consuming and sometimes repetitive task, employers should maintain careful and thorough records since various state agencies can and often do inspect them at any time. In addition, accurate records are often an employer's best defense if a complaint or lawsuit is filed or if an employer's compliance with the law is otherwise questioned. Employers should also keep in mind that the period for retaining records set in the various statutes is minimum. Since these records are critical to the employer if compliance with state or federal law is questioned, or if it must defend itself against employment-related litigation, employers may want to retain employment records for longer periods. Moreover, the penalties for not keeping required records may be severe.