OSHRC Widens Leeway For Employers’ ‘Good Faith’ Faults In Litigation

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Jim Sullivan spoke with Inside OSHA about OSHA's decision in Secretary of Labor v. Knock Out Homes, Inc. which reinstates a Colorado construction company’s appeal of several OSHA citations with a proposed penalty of $41,349, overturning an administrative law judge’s (ALJ) default judgment against the employer over its failure to respond to the proceeding. It marks the second time in just over a month that the commission has held that a lower court judge acted too harshly by dismissing a case because an employer failed to meet filing deadlines, following a similar Dec. 2 decision in Secretary of Labor v. Generational Buildings. “It is a signal from the commissioners to the judges, that they need to be more lenient in examining reasons why a case should be dismissed or summary judgment entered simply on a failure to respond timely to either a citation or a complaint,” said Jim.

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