Late fines could lead to placement on inspection priority list

Federal OSHA announced a new debt collection initiative involving a series of letters, a phone call, and eventual placement on an inspection priority list. The initiative begins with a series of penalty payment letters sent to businesses who don’t pay fines on time and eventually leads to the employer being placed on an inspection priority list if a fine goes unpaid.

Penalty Payment Letters

Penalty payment letters will be sent seven, 30 and 60 days after a business fails to pay a penalty on time based on a final order, and employers will also be contacted by phone 14 days after the payment comes due.

Businesses that pay fines on time will not receive any letters or calls. If the fine isn’t paid, and the business isn’t on an affordable payment plan, “OSHA will place the establishment on a priority list for further inspection,” according to a Department of Labor news release.

Additionally, OSHA inspectors will gather employer identification numbers as part of the pre-inspection preparation. This will “ensure that firms with safety and health violations are held accountable and pay their debts to the United States Government.”