Former Employee may Inspect Personnel File

May 15, 2007

Although the Personnel Files Act limits inspection rights to "any person currently employed", it does not prohibit an individual from obtaining access when the individual makes a request contemporaneously with termination or within a reasonable time immediately following termination. Beitman v. Dept of Labor and Industry, 675 A.2d 1300 (Pa. Cmwlth 1996).  Remember that disciplinary records that may form a basis for defense of a legal claim should be included in the personnel file unless prepared in anticipation of litigation.  If documents are not in the personnel file when inspected by a former employee, an argument can be made that they were fabricated after the fact.