I have blogged previously about the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) annual adjustments to the maximum civil penalty dollar amounts for OSHA violations. The DOL has now finalized the 2020 inflation adjustments, which again nudge the penalties even higher.  85 Fed. Reg. 2292 (Jan. 15, 2020).

Under the 2020 rule, the new maximum OSHA civil penalties will be:

2019 Penalties 2020 Penalties
Other than Serious Violations: $13,260 $13,494
Serious Violations: $13,260 $13,494
Repeat Violations: $132,598 $134,937
Willful Violations: $132,598 $134,937
Failure to Abate (Per Day): $13,260 $13,494

The new OSHA penalty amounts are applicable to OSHA citations issued after January 15, 2020.

Going forward, DOL is required to continue to adjust maximum OSHA penalties for inflation by January 15 of each new year.

OSHA has stated that its primary goal is correcting workplace safety and health hazards and ensuring compliance rather than imposing citations and collecting penalties. I guess that’s like saying: I’m from the government and I’m here to help you”.

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