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Increased Penalties for Employment Law Violations

January 31, 2017

Due to requirements under the Inflation Adjustment Act, which requires federal agencies to adjust their civil monetary penalty levels each year, employers will face increased penalties if they are found to be in violation of various employment laws. Both the Department of Labor (DOL) and the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) have updated their fines, which become effective on January 13, 2017.

Below is a list of key civil penalties that will be imposed:

  • Willful or repeated wage and hour violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA): $1,925;
  • Willful or repeated violation that causes serious injury or death: up to $111,616;
  • Child labor violations that result in a minor’s injury or death: up to $55,808;
  • Serious violations of OSHA: $12,675;
  • OSHA posting violations: up to $12,675;
  • Failure to correct a violation for which OSHA has issued a citation: $12,675;
  • Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) posting violations: $166;
  • Failure to provide a summary of benefits and coverage to affected individuals pursuant to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA): $1,105;
  • Failure to provide notices to participants that inform them of automatic contribution arrangements under ERISA: $1,659;
  • Failure to inform employee of Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) opportunities: $112; and
  • Willful violation of Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) provisions, particularly the H-1B program that results in the displacement of a U.S. employee: $51,588.

These increases will apply to DOL and OSHA penalties that are assessed after the effective date; however, they may only be imposed on employers whose violations occurred after November 2, 2015.

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