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Do we need to have employees sign a new handbook for each update?


Question: We recently made a couple of small updates to our employee handbook. Do we need to have employees sign a new handbook for each update?


Answer from Shawna, SHRM-CP: No. For small, minor updates, you don’t need employees to sign off, especially if you simply made an administrative change like updating the name of your employee assistance program provider, correcting a typo, or adding a clarifying statement. A simple communication to all employees to let them know that the change has been made, why, and where to find the change should suffice as notice.


Larger changes, like a brand-new policy or an update with essential changes, would warrant a new employee signature, especially if they could be disciplined for violating the new or updated policy. If you need to discipline an employee related to the new policy or update, their signature will help show that they were made aware of the change.


This Q&A does not constitute legal advice and does not address state or local law.


After working in the mental health field for nearly a decade, Shawna became an HR professional and obtained a masters in Industrial/Organizational Psychology with a Society of Human Resources Management certification. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and a Minor in Sociology. In her free time, Shawna enjoys hiking with her family, backpacking, running, and reading.


Legal Disclaimer: On-Time Payroll is not engaged in the practice of law. The content in this post should not be construed as legal advice, and does not create an attorney-client relationship. If you have legal questions concerning your situation or the information you have obtained, you should consult with a licensed attorney. OTP cannot be held legally accountable for actions related to its receipt.


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