President Trump Nullifies OSHA’s Ongoing Recordkeeping Rule

May 15, 2017

On April 3, 2017, President Trump signed into law House Joint Resolution 83, which nullified the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (“OSHA”) rule that allowed OSHA to cite employers that failed to make and maintain records of job-related injuries and illnesses for five years. OSHA had implemented the original rule in order to clarify that employers’ record keeping requirements were an ongoing obligation.

While the 1970 Occupational Safety and Health Act does allow for a citation for violations of the recordkeeping laws, those citations were limited to violations that occurred within six months of when the incident was to be recorded. The recently nullified rule came about as the result of a federal circuit court holding that OSHA lacked authority to issue citations for recordkeeping violations more than six months after the violation occurred. Under the new rule, OSHA sought the authority to cite employers for failing to comply with their ongoing recordkeeping obligations by allowing OSHA to issue citations up to five years after a recordkeeping violation occurred.

However, with the passage of House Joint Resolution 83 into law, OSHA can no longer issue citations for an employer that fails to record incidents within the first six months of when incidents took place. In other words, OSHA is once again limited to investigating whether there was a recordkeeping violation within six months of the date on which the violation was alleged to have occurred.

Administrative rule making is one of the most complex and fast changing areas of the law that can affect a large number of businesses. This is just one example of how quickly things can change in today’s political environment. In order to make sure that your business is in compliance with today’s ever changing rules, it is important that you have legal professions that track these changes and analyze how they can affect your business. You will find these professionals at Rock Fusco & Connelly, LLC.