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Employers that knowingly fail to comply with OSHA standards will see a near 2% increase in monetary penalties.

On January 15, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) raised its civil penalties (85 Fed. Reg. 2,292) by approximately 1.8%. The final rule implements annual inflation adjustments of civil monetary penalties assessed or enforced by OSHA and other agencies within the Department of Labor (DOL) in 2020, as required by the Inflation Adjustment Act (Pub. L. 114-74).

OSHA’s penalty increases for workplace safety and health violations include:

  • For a willful violation, in which an employer knowingly failed to comply with an OSHA standard or demonstrated a plain indifference for employee safety, the minimum penalty increases from $9,472 to $9,639 and the maximum penalty increases from $132,598 to $134,937;
  • For each repeated violation for an identical or substantially similar violation previously cited by the agency, the penalty ceiling rises from $132,598 to $134,937;
  • For each serious violation for workplace hazards that could cause an accident or illness that would most likely result in death or serious physical harm, the maximum penalty increases from $13,260 to $13,494;
  • For each other-than-serious violation, the maximum penalty increases from $13,260 to $13,494;
  • For each failure to correct violation, the maximum penalty increases from $13,260 to $13,494; and
  • For each posting requirement violation, the maximum penalty increases from $13,260 to $13,494.

The new penalty amounts take effect immediately, applying to any penalties assessed after January 15.

Editor’s note: This article originally appeared on EHS Daily Advisor.

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