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Can I See My Personnel File?

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Can I See My Personnel File?

Can you tell me how I can find out what the laws in Texas are for viewing my personnel file? Or could you point me to any online resources?



Dear Sandy:

There is no statute in Texas mandating that private sector employers give employees access to their personnel files. Given that, employers can basically do as they please. To find out more information, your best bet would be to check with the Texas Workforce Commission.

Since this question has come up multiple times, states that allow access by private sector employees (the public sector is a whole other ball game…) in one form or another are: Alaska, California, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Washington, and Wisconsin (source: The Employer’s Legal Handbook – Nolo Press).

Among the states that do guarantee access, the type of access varies from being allowed to see certain items a finite number of times per year to unlimited access to viewing and copying. It all depends upon the particular state. The best way to find out what laws apply is to check with your state’s department of labor. A listing can be found on the web at

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