OSHA Penalties Going Up

OSHA’s civil penalties amounts for violations of workplace safety and health standards will increase this year to adjust for inflation.

The adjusted maximum penalty amounts will take effect upon publication in the Federal Register.

OSHA and other federal agencies were directed to re-evaluate their civil and monetary penalties by the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015.

The statute featured a provision called the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015, to amend the 1990 version of the law to require all agencies covered by the statute to update penalties, which allowed OSHA to increase its fines by up to 78% as of Aug. 1, 2016, and adjust these fines annually to account for inflation.

The increases are as follows:

  • New penalties for willful and repeat violations will be $132,598 per violation;
  • Serious, other-than-serious, and posting requirements are $13,260 per violation; and
  • Failure to abate violations are $13,260 per day beyond the abatement date.