OSHA increased fine amounts by 78 percent effective August 1, 2016. The maximum penalty for a serious violation will increase from $7,000 to $12,471. The maximum penalty for a repeat or willful violation will increase from $70,000 to $124,709. Failure to abate citations will increase from $7,000 per day beyond the abatement date to $12,471 per day beyond the abatement date.
On August 2, 2016, OSHA released a new Field Operations Manual, which explains how OSHA will calculate fine amounts for employers who violate OSHA regulations.
Specifically, the fine amounts for a Serious violation vary depending on the violation’s “Severity” and “Probability” as determined by OSHA when calculating the fine. Below is a guide of fine amounts for a Serious violation without considering potential discounts based on the employer’s size and good faith.
|Severity ||Probability||Fine Amount||Increase from Prior Penalty Amount|
|Medium||Greater||$10,689 ||$4,689 |
Similarly, for Willful citations, the Field Operations Manual contains a chart explaining the fine amounts based on “Gravity.” Below is a guide of fine amounts for a Willful violation without considering potential discounts based on the employer’s size and good faith.
The manual contains other information regarding calculating penalties; however, the formulas are mostly unchanged from previous years.