Maximum OSHA Penalty Increases with Inflation

As of January 2, 2018, the maximum penalties handed out by OSHA have increased by 2 percent.

Serious violations now come with a maximum penalty of $12,934, compared to $12,675 last year. Willful or repeat violations have a maximum penalty of $129,336, compared to the previous max of $126,749, according to the U.S. Federal Register. 

The new maximum penalty levels apply to violations that occurred after November 2, 2015, but with the penalty assessed after January 2, 2018. If the penalty was assessed between January 13, 2017, but on or before January 2, 2018, then the previous penalty scale is used.

In an effort to make all these numbers and dates easier to understand, we created a handy infographic below. Check it out and feel free to share it online or at your workplace.

The increase is a requirement of the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Improvements Act, which Congress passed into law in 2015. As a part of the legislation, maximum OSHA penalties must keep pace with the rate of inflation and have to be enacted before January 15 of each year.

Before 2015, OSHA’s penalty structure had not been updated since 1990. After that Act went into effect, maximum OSHA penalties increased from $7,000 to more than $12,000 for serious violation, and from¬†$70,000 to $124,709 for willful or repeat violations, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

What’s the best way to avoid learning more about OSHA’s penalty structure? Preventing workplace injuries from happening! Our experts at SCT have decades of experience working for and with OSHA. Fill out our contact form to quickly get in touch with our team.








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