The “third time’s a charm” applies to even the federal government. The Department of Labor has not been able to get many ticks in the W column lately with both its Persuader Rule and Overtime Rule getting enjoined from implementation. Although attempts were made to enjoin these new reporting rules from becoming effective, yesterday, a trial judge denied issuing an injunction against OSHA’s new reporting rules.
OSHA is to provide a secure website that offers multiple options for data submission. Per OSHA, the site is scheduled to go live in February 2017. The new reporting requirements will be phased in over two years. Employers with 250 or more employees in industries covered by the record-keeping regulation must submit information from their 2016 Form 300A by July 1, 2017. These same employers will be required to submit information from all 2017 forms (300A, 300, and 301) by July 1, 2018. Beginning in 2019, the information must be submitted by March 2.
Employers with 20-249 employees in identified high-risk industries, must submit information from their 2016 Form 300A by July 1, 2017, and their 2017 Form 300A by July 1, 2018. Beginning in 2019, the information must be submitted by March 2.
Effect today, the new OSHA record-keeping rule prohibits employers from discouraging workers from reporting an injury or illness. The final rule requires employers to inform employees of their right to report work-related injuries and illnesses free from retaliation, which can be satisfied by posting the already required OSHA workplace poster. In support of this anti-retaliation stance, the new rule makes explicit that an employer’s procedure for reporting work-related injuries and illnesses must be reasonable, and cannot deter or discourage employees from reporting. The existing statutory prohibition on retaliating against employees for reporting work-related injuries or illnesses are incorporated as well.