Employee Access to Employment Files

Having Trouble With Access to Your Employment Records in California?

You have the right to inspect your employer’s personnel record under California law, as long as the inspecting relates to your performance or a grievance. When employees in California cities such as Los Angeles, San Diego, Santa Clara, or San Francisco, make a request to inspect their employment file, employers have three responsibilities:


  • The employer must keep a copy of the employee’s personnel records;
  • The employer must make those records available to the employee within a reasonable time; and
  • The employer must permit the employee to inspect those records without punishing or retaliating against the employee for doing so.

Former employees may also be entitled to inspect their employment file. While this is not as clear as the current employee rule, it is still a right that former employees are usually granted.


Call 800-568-8020 in Los Angeles, San Diego, Orange County or Sacramento

The California employment law attorneys of Blumenthal, Nordrehaug & Bhowmik have significant experience in employment litigation in the areas of law that affect employee rights, such as union organization and activities, severance agreements, and employment contracts.
We focus on protecting employee rights in counties throughout the state, such as San Diego County, Orange County, Santa Clara County, Alameda County and San Francisco County.


Making a Freedom of Information Act Request in California Public Employment

State employees can also make a Freedom of Information Act request to the Department of Justice. Employees should send their requests directly to the Department of Justice. In the request, employees are allowed to identify the exact documents requested as well as the format in which those documents are to be produced. Although there are certain exemptions under which the Department of Justice does not have to produce documents, as long as the documents are limited to your employment records you should be able to obtain them using this method. At Blumenthal, Nordrehaug & Bhowmik, our California employment law attorneys can assist you with obtaining your employment records. Contact us for additional information.