OSHA’s Electronic Recordkeeping Rule Revisited

As previously mentioned in this blog, all covered employers under the new electronic recordkeeping regulation were required to electronically file their 2016 300A form by December 30, 2017. As of January 1, 2018, OSHA no longer accepted the 2016 data. During the filing period, OSHA indicated approximately one-third of the establishments that were required to file did not do so.

In February this year, OSHA instructed compliance officers to begin inquiries into whether businesses had complied with the electronic recordkeeping rule and that it would issue an other-than-serious citation for failing to do so. The maximum penalty for such a classification is currently $12,934.  OSHA’s deadline to issue such a citation expires on June 15, 2018.

OSHA has also indicated that it may eliminate the electronic filing requirement that employers with 250 or more employees must submit their OSHA 300 logs and 301 incident reports due to privacy concerns of personal information. As mentioned above, it waived such requirement for the 2016 forms.

For covered employers that have missed the 2016 filing deadline, it would still be prudent to review all of its OSHA forms to ensure they are properly completed in case OSHA comes knocking. It may not necessarily prevent the issuance of an other-than-serious citation required by the electronic submission rule but doing so could be help prevent additional recordkeeping citations and/or negotiating down the penalty particularly when businesses are aware OSHA is currently focused on this issue.

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