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OSHA Clarifies Rule on Injury and Illness Records

Dec 21, 2016

The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) issued a final rule that clarifies an employer’s continuing obligation to make and maintain accurate records of recordable injury and illness. The rule was printed in the Federal Register on Monday and will become effective January 18, 2017.

This rulemaking reverses the ruling in AKM LLC d/b/a Volks Constructors v. Sec’y of Labor, 675 F.3d 752 (D.C. Cir. 2012), which found that OSHA cannot issue citations for an employer failing to record an injury or illness beyond the six-month statute of limitations as set out in the Occupational Safety and Health Act. The rule clarifies that an employer has a continuing obligation to record illness and injuries for five years, which coincides with the record-retention requirements.

As part of the Coalition for Workplace Safety, IDFA filed comments objecting to this rulemaking, which could potentially come under review by the Trump Administration. It also could be subject to the Congressional Review Act, which gives lawmakers 60 legislative days to overturn a regulation from the administration or previous administration.

If lawmakers are not in session for 60 days before adjourning their final session, the clock rests, and the new Congress is given 60 days to act. The Congressional Review Act has only been used once to overturn the OSHA ergonomics standard in 2001.

Members with questions may contact Emily, Lyons, IDFA director of regulatory affairs and counsel, at

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