Ontario Records Checklist – 2 Key Requirements


Employment records must be maintained by employers in every workplace in Canada. These requirements are found in different legislation, including health and safety, employment standards, and accessibility legislation. Depending on your jurisdiction, there may also be record-keeping requirements under pay equity, privacy, and labour relations legislation. And the specific requirements vary by jurisdiction.

What’s more, requirements often change. Employers should periodically review their record-keeping requirements to make sure they are keeping the right records, for the right amount of time. Failure to  comply with these requirements can lead to enforcement action, including penalties and fines, or law suits including class actions (improper record keeping was a key issue in a recent class action).

To help HR compliance professionals implement these requirements effectively, Compliance Works has published this new Ontario Records Checklist. This Compliance Works Checklist is the latest in a series of new tools for HR compliance professionals designed to ensure the workplace is in compliance with fundamental HR requirements. Future posts will cover other jurisdictions in Canada.

Download your Compliance Works Ontario Records Checklist now!

When it comes to Ontario records, there are two key requirements:

  1. To create and maintain certain records; and
  2. To retain those records for the required time period.

Our Ontario Records Checklist addresses both of these requirements.

Ontario Records Checklist

Health and Safety

  • Accident, injury, illness and/or death reports (kept for  at least 3 years)
  • First aid reports, which must include the date and time of the incident, the names of witnesses, the nature and exact location of the injuries to the worker and the date, time and nature of each first aid treatment given. There is no retention period specified for these records.
  • Employers must maintain records of the basic occupational health and safety awareness training completed by workers and supervisors.
  • If a worker/supervisor completes a training program and requests proof of completion, the employer must provide them with written proof, including up to 6 months after no longer working for the employer.

Employment Standards

All records, other than relating to vacation, must be kept for 3 years. The commencement of the time period varies depending on the record.

  • From the date the employee is no longer employed
    • The employee’s name and address.
    • The date on which the employee began employment.
  • From the day or week to which the information relates
    • The dates and times that the employee worked.
    • The dates and times that the employee worked overtime at each rate of pay, if the employee has two or more regular rates of pay for work performed for the employer and, in a work week, the employee worked overtime.
    • The number of hours the employee worked in each day and in each week.
  • From the date the information was given to the employee
    • The information contained in any written statements given to the employee.
  • From the date on which the leave expired
    • All documents related to any leaves of absence (employers must ensure confidentiality of leave records related to domestic and sexual violence leave).
  • From the last day on which work was performed under the agreement
    • All overtime agreements.
    • All averaging agreements.
  • From the date the policy ceases to be in effect
    • Copies of every written policy on disconnecting from work (if required).
    • Copies of every written policy on electronic monitoring (if required).
  • From the date the record was made
    • All records regarding vacation time and vacation pay (these must be kept for 5 years from the date the record was made).


  • Private sector organizations with 50+ employees and the Public Sector must keep training records, including training dates and number of individuals to whom training is provided. There is no retention period specified.

Note – you may be subject to additional record keeping requirements under other legislation, including  Labour Relations legislation (if applicable).

How Compliance Works Helps HR Professionals

Compliance with constantly changing employment laws can be challenging and time consuming. Compliance Works explains current employment legislation and stays on top of changes to employment laws – across Canada. Use Compliance Works to quickly answer questions with confidence, knowing that all of the requirements have been pulled together in one easy summary.

Contact us to Request a Demo , subscribe to Compliance Works publications, or email us at info@complianceworks.ca to learn how a paid subscription to Compliance Works can help your HR team succeed.

Ontario records

About the author

Gayle Wadden
Gayle Wadden CLO, Compliance Works
Gayle Wadden is a senior lawyer with deep experience in employment and corporate law. She is responsible for overseeing Compliance Works’ legal content.

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