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OSHA Delays Recordkeeping Rule

Employers will be relieved to know that their requirement to file injury information through an electronic recordkeeping system, a move slated to take effect on July 1, is now off the table - at least temporarily.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), which had issued a rule requiring the posting of such information for most employers in May 2016, announced that the filing deadline is now postponed indefinitely.   

What’s unclear at this point is the reason for the delay and when a new deadline will be set. 

Although the filing deadline was just six weeks away, the agency hadn’t yet provided the online portal for employers to begin collecting and submitting the information required (the previous calendar year’s recordable injury and illness cases and rates for each workplace).

It’s important to remember that the electronic recordkeeping rule would not have created new obligations in terms of reporting. Those employers covered by the new rule would have been asked to use data from their OSHA Forms 300, 300A, and 301 when using the electronic reporting method.

However, OSHA was prepared to electronically post injury and illness data on its website from all workplaces with 20 or more employees and for those in certain high-risk industries. This would make the information publicly available for consumption by unions, plaintiffs’ attorneys and others. Submission was to be phased in based on employer establishment size and industry.