How To Prevent MIOSHA Fines (UPDATED)

How To Prevent MIOSHA Fines (UPDATED)

How To Prevent MIOSHA Fines (UPDATED)

The Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (MIOSHA) role is to assure that there are safe and healthy working conditions for workers in Michigan. They enforce occupational safety and health standards which employers are expected to live up to. 

When an employer is found in violation of any of MIOSHA’s rules and regulations, they are subject to specific fines based on the violation.

We've asked our Lead Instructor, Sid Woryn, to give us an update on these important types of fines and how you can prevent them from affecting your business. You can find the original post here.

Below we’ll discuss the different penalties you could potentially face if your workplace is found in violation of any standards. 

There are four main factors that are taken into consideration when determining a fine for safety violations: 

⇒ The gravity of the violation*

⇒ Size of the company

⇒ A good faith effort to comply

⇒ History of previous violations

The gravity of the violation will be the primary factor when determining a penalty. The inspector will be looking at the severity of the injury that could occur from the violation as well as the probability that an injury could occur. 

De Minimis Violations 

A De Minimis violation can be issued if you have failed to comply with a standard that does not cause immediate harm to the safety or health of the employees.

Failure to Abate Violations

A failure to abate violation will be issued when an employer already has a citation that has not been corrected. 

Penalty Maximum: $7,000/per day in violation past the due date

Other-than Serious Violations

An other-than-serious violation will be issued if a hazardous condition exists and could potentially cause an injury that would not result in death or serious physical harm. 

Penalty Maximum: $7,000 

Regulatory Violations

A regulatory violation is issued relating to recordkeeping, posting and procedural violations. 

Penalty Maximum: $7,000

Willful Violations

A willful violation will be issued if MIOSHA finds that an employer was indifferent when it comes to employee safety or there was an intentional violation of the act. 

The following would all be subject to a willful violation:

⇒ Trench excavation without cave-in protection

⇒ Lack of eye or face protection against physical, chemical, or radiation agents

⇒ Improperly braced or overloaded scaffolding

⇒ No lockout training

Penalty Amount: $5,000 - $70,000 per violation 

MIOSHA is required to refer willful violations that include a workplace death for criminal prosecution. The maximum fine for a first offense is $10,000 and one year in prison. The maximum fine for a second offense is $20,000 and three years in prison.

Repeat Violations

A repeat violation is issued when an employer violates the same regulation more than once in a three-year period. The penalties start at $100 for a small employer and $200 for a large employer.

Penalty Amount: $100 - $70,000 per violation

Serious Violations

A serious violation is issued if an employer is found to have not protected their employees against workplace hazards that could cause an injury or illness most likely to result in serious harm or death. 

The following would be subject to a serious violation:

⇒ No eye protection for flying particles and corrosive liquids

⇒ No fall protection

⇒ No hard hats

⇒ Having no one certified in CPR or first aid

Penalty Amount: $200 - $7,000

There’s no doubt a violation of MIOSHA’s rules can come with hefty consequences for your business. The best thing you can do is take action by ensuring that your workplace is in regulation. Check out these tips to learn how to avoid getting fined by MIOSHA.