An investigator from the federal Occupational Safety & Health Administration made a surprise visit to one of the manufacturing companies represented by the Firm. Instead of immediately allowing the investigator to tour the plant, the human resource manager demanded a warrant. OSHA obtained a warrant and visited the company the next day. By then, the human resource manager had contacted the Firm and received instructions on the rights and responsibilities of OSHA and the company during an investigation. The company now awaits any citations OSHA may issue.
Alan M. Kaplan notes that all companies should assign one person, such as the human resource professional, to respond to all governmental inquiries. In addition, all companies should know both the company’s rights and OSHA’s procedures to better represent the company during an OSHA inspection. To provide assistance to the Firm’s clients, the Firm has two articles available to the Firm’s clients, one on OSHA inspections and one of the rights and responsibilities of companies. The issuance of a citation is not the end of the process. Instead, companies have the right to appeal the nature of the alleged violation and the penalties within OSHA, to the United States Solicitor of Labor and, if necessary, through the federal courts.