Kicking off 2018, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has increased the total citation cost for worker safety and health protection violations this new year. With over 85,000 federal and state inspections conducted in 2017, this means that 2018 is projected to have the highest total gross of citation fees concerning enforcement cases in the department’s history. If you are a contractor or construction professional, this also means you may be in need of an OSHA defense attorney this new year.
Notice of Increase
In a Federal Notice issued on January 2, 2018, the U.S. Department of Labor announced the penalty increase by “publishing this final rule to adjust for inflation the civil monetary penalties assessed or enforced in its regulations.” This decision is pursuant to the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act of 1990 as amended by the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015 (Inflation Adjustment Act). This inflation-inspired, new enforcement total was also announced to be effective immediately.
The Penalty Amount Changes
OSHA increased penalties for violations of serious, failure to abate, and other-than-serious citations. The total increase was $319 per citation totaling in a change of $12,615 to $12,934 for each maximum penalty violation. The total expense for willful and repeat violations increased by over $2,500 as well. Those maximum penalties experienced an increase from $126,749 to $129,336 in total.
Consult an OSHA Attorney
With penalties increasing and thousands of inspections already scheduled this new year, it’s important to consult with an experienced OSHA attorney. Our law firm is extremely familiar with the OSHA inspection and citation process and we defend construction industry professionals against OSHA citations. If you have received an OSHA citation, we can offer you the right legal counsel.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.