OSHA’s Final Rule “Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses” Imposes New Electronic Submission Requirements on Employers
Insight & Impact - Labor & Employment Regulatory Newsletter 08/27/17 Fred Gants
As of August 24, 2017, OSHA has temporarily shut down its ITA portal for electronic submission while the agency investigates a "potential compromise" of an employer's electronic data. The Department of Labor has notified the affected employer, and OSHA is currently working to examine the issue and determine the extent of the problem. Given this setback and the Trump Administration's recent suggestions that it is considering reversing the electronic submission requirement entirely, employers should continue gathering their relevant recordkeeping requirements but hold off on electronic submission until further notice.
ISSUE: In May of 2016, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued a final rule "Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses" to revise its existing recording and reporting occupational injuries and illnesses regulation. The final rule requires employers in certain industries to electronically submit to OSHA injury and illness recordkeeping data included on the 300A, 300, and 301 forms. The final rule also includes provisions that encourage employees to report work-related injuries or illnesses to their employers and prohibits employers from retaliating against workers for doing so.
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IMPACT: Employers with 250 or more employees that are currently required to keep OSHA injury and illness records must electronically submit data contained in OSHA forms 300A, 300, and 301, except for those fields that contain personally identifiable information (e.g., employee name, address, and health care provider). Employers with 20 to 249 employees that are classified in certain high risk industries must electronically submit all data fields currently contained in the OSHA form 300A. OSHA will provide a secure website for the electronic submission of information but intends to make the submitted data readily available to the public in standard open formats on its website, and interested parties will be able to search and download the data.
The electronic reporting requirements will be phased in over two years. When the final rule was first published in May of 2016, the first electronic submission deadline for all covered employers of their 2016 Form 300A was set as July 1, 2017. In June of 2017, however, OSHA published a notice of proposed rulemaking to extend this deadline to December 1, 2017. Next year, employers with 250 or more employees will be required to submit information from all 2017 forms (300A, 300, and 301) by July 1, 2018. Similarly, employers with 20-249 employees in certain high risk industries will have to submit information from their 2017 Form 300A by July 1, 2018. Beginning in 2019 and every year thereafter, the information for all covered employers must be electronically submitted by March 2.
Employers should make their electronic submissions of recordkeeping information online at OSHA's Injury Tracking Application (ITA) launch page, which can be found here.
For more information on determining independent contractor status, please contact your Quarles & Brady attorney or:
- Fred Gants: (608) 283-2618 / [email protected].