People generally do not need to keep their pay stubs for more than one year. They should be kept to verify information on an employer's annual W-2 form. If the numbers match, the stubs can be shredded.
However, if a person is planning to buy a home, he should keep his pay stubs for several months, as lenders often like to see that information.
Other documents that generally do not need to be kept for more than a year include utility and medical bills, credit card statements and bank statements. However, if any of these may play a role in tax filing, they should be kept for several years.