Employment Records : NS Labour and Advanced Education, Employment Rights

Employers and recruiters are required to keep and maintain records relating to the employment and recruitment of employees and individuals.



Employers must keep employment records to show that employees receive at least the benefits they are entitled to under the Labour Standards Code. These records must be kept at the employer's main place of business and must be kept for at least 36 months after the work has been performed. As well, employers must be prepared to show that all outstanding pay has been paid.

Employers must keep the following information:

  • list of the names of all employees, showing the employees' age and last known home address
  • record of the rates of wages, hours of work, vacation periods, leaves of absence, pay, and vacation pay each employee received
  • record of the date each employee began work and, if the employee no longer works for that employer, the last day he/she was employed
  • record of when employees were laid off or fired and the dates when those employees received notice of the end of their jobs
  • record of how much each employee has been paid

Employers who use a recruiter to recruit employees for employment must also keep the following information for 36 months after the work has been performed:

  • the name and address of any person the employer paid a recruitment fee to and the date and amount of the payment



Pay Stubs

Employers must give employees pay stubs when paying their wages. The pay stub must show:

  • the pay period the employee is being paid for
  • the number of hours the employee is being paid for
  • the wage rate (for example, $17.00 per hour)
  • all the deductions made from the employee's pay
  • how much the employee is being paid after deductions are made

Employers can provide electronic pay stubs as long as employees are able to access the electronic pay stub.


Recruiters of Foreign Workers

Recruiters of foreign workers must keep and maintain the following records for at least three years after the records are made:

  • accurate financial records of their operations in Nova Scotia
  • a copy of each agreement the recruiter has entered into respecting the recruitment of a foreign worker
  • a list of every foreign worker recruited by the recruiter for employment in Nova Scotia


Method of Keeping Records

Employers and recruiters may keep records using any method (from a manual system using a payroll book from a stationery store to a computerized bookkeeping/payroll program). The records must be organized, easy to read, accurate, and up to date.


Inspection of Records

Labour Standards officers can inspect all records of employers and recruiters that in any way relate to the recruitment employment of individuals, including foreign workers.

They also have the right, at any reasonable time, to enter any work place or office to:

  • inspect any place where people might work or where any individual was or is being recruited
  • talk to any employee or any individual who was or is being recruited during or outside working hours

Employers and recruiters who fail to keep records, or to keep them up to date, and who fail to give information to the Director of Labour Standards or a Labour Standards officer, may be guilty of a violation under the Labour Standards Code.




What steps can an employee take if the employer fails to provide the employee with a T4 slip and/or a Record of Employment after the employment relationship ends?

All questions concerning a Record of Employment (ROE or separation papers) and employment insurance (EI) should be directed to the nearest Employment Insurance Centre, Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC).

All questions about T-4 slips should be directed to the nearest Canada Revenue Agency