After today, August 1, 2016, the civil penalties assessed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) will increase by 78%. This is actually less than the 82% that was originally allowed by Congress, but not by much. The new maximum penalties will be as follows: (1) Serious, Other-than-Serious, and Posting Requirement Violations—$12,471 per violation; (2) Failure-to-Abate Violations—$12,471 per day beyond the abatement date; and, (3) Willful or Repeat Violations—$124,709 per violation. These new maximum penalties will apply to alleged violations occurring after November 2, 2015, but cited after August 1, 2016.
In the coming year, employers will see the immediate and practical impact of these increases. As we noted in a related post on the Work Knowledge Blog earlier this year, a couple of things could occur. First, OSHA could cite less varied violations and focus on actual or perceived safety issues, which… Continue Reading