John S. Ho

Chair, OSHA Practice

New York

(212) 883-4927

(212) 986-0604

Recent Publication:

OSHA Changes COVID-19 Recordkeeping Requirements for Employers (Again) [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

On May 19, 2020, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) published revised enforcement guidance detailing when employers must record COVID-19 illnesses. The new guidance reverses course on prior guidance dated April 10, 2020 which relaxed the circumstances when most employers...

John S. Ho exclusively represents employers on all labor and employment matters and regularly handles wage and hour matters involving federal and state laws, such as the Fair Labor Standards Act, the New York Labor Law, New York’s Miscellaneous Industries Wage Order, and New York’s Hospitality Wage Order which includes numerous cases involving New York’s Wage Theft Prevention Act, tip credits and tip pooling issues. John also routinely works with the Occupational Safety and Health Act, in addition to handling discrimination claims, ADA public accommodation cases, drafting employee handbook policies and procedures and employment contracts, conducting workplace investigations, and arbitrations. John has defended a wide range of employers against hybrid class and collective actions under the FLSA and the New York Labor Law. He also frequently assists companies with internal wage and hour audits, as well as Department of Labor audits, including those generated by misclassification of independent contractors in New York State unemployment filings.  John also has extensive experience with assisting businesses with internal safety and health audits and resolving and contesting OSHA citations including but not limited to fatality investigations as well as defending against claims of retaliation under OSHA and New York’s Workers’ Compensation Law.

As a former prosecutor with the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of the Solicitor, John was part of a litigation team that recovered approximately $4 million under the FLSA on behalf of New York State Environmental Conservation Officers. While at the DOL, he also received a commendation from OSHA’s regional administrator for his prosecution of a discrimination complaint under the Surface Transportation Assistance Act.   

John serves as the chair of Cozen O'Connor’s OSHA Practice and is also the author of its safety and health blog, the OSHA Chronicle.

John is a founding member of the Wage and Hour Defense Institute, and he frequently lectures on FLSA, OSHA, and Labor Department audits. He has also taught business and employment law at the Pratt Institute and the New School.

John also writes extensively on labor and employment law. He served as the co-editor of the American Bar Association Labor and Employment Law Section (Section) electronic newsletter from to 2015-2019 and currently serves the vice-chair of the Member Engagement Committee of the Section. He was a contributing editor to The Fair Labor Standards Act, 2002-2005, Cumulative Supplement, published by BNA Books, and has served on its editorial board since 2006. John is also serving as a chapter editor for the Occupational Safety and Health Law, Fourth Edition published by the ABA and Bloomberg Law. 

John is frequently asked to comment on labor and employment issues and has been quoted extensively in the Long Island Business News, Newsday, the Daily Labor Report and the Employment 360 and has been published in the New York Journal and USA Today (the magazine), among other publications. John has been named a New York Metro Super Lawyer since 2014.

John is also a former officer and current board member of the Connecticut Asian Pacific American Bar Association.

 

Experience

News

Lessons for Response Plans

March 21, 2020

John Ho was quoted in CU Today discussing companies creating a response plan during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Creating a Business Response Plan to COVID-19

March 12, 2020

John Ho was quoted in New Jersey Business discussing the best practices to use in creating a business response plan during a pandemic.

The Coronavirus Outbreak is Exactly Why Companies Need Pandemic Policies

March 02, 2020

John Ho was quoted in Money discussing the response plans businesses should have in place during a pandemic.

17 Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Recognized as New York Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

September 27, 2019

Super Lawyers has named 17 Cozen O'Connor attorneys to its 2019 New York Super Lawyers and Rising Stars list.

138 Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Named to the Best Lawyers in America

August 28, 2019

Best Lawyers selected 138 Cozen O’Connor lawyers from 21 of the firm’s national offices for inclusion in the 2020 edition of The Best Lawyers in America.

OSHA use of general duty clause in citations troubles commissioners

March 06, 2019

John Ho was quoted in Business Insurance about OSHA's use of the general duty clause.

Cozen O'Connor Names John Ho as Leadership Council on Legal Diversity Fellow

March 05, 2019

Cozen O'Connor has chosen John Ho, chair of the firm’s OSHA Practice, to be a member of the 2019 class of fellows, participating in a landmark program created by the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD) to identify, train, and advance the next generation of leaders in the legal profession.

OSHA Now Using Drones to Inspect Employer Facilities

December 28, 2018

John Ho, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Labor & Employment department, was quoted in EHS Today, discussing the use of drones in OSHA inspections.

18 Cozen O'Connor Attorneys Named New York Metro Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

September 21, 2018

Super Lawyers has named 17 Cozen O'Connor attorneys to its 2018 New York Super Lawyers and Rising Stars list. Twelve were recognized as Super Lawyers and five were named "Rising Stars."

126 Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Named to the Best Lawyers in America

August 22, 2018

One hundred twenty-six Cozen O’Connor lawyers from 20 of the firm’s national offices have been selected for inclusion in the 2018 edition of The Best Lawyers in America.

Department of Labor program draws ire of Pa. attorneys general

August 07, 2018

John Ho, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Labor & Employment department, was quoted in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette discussing a new initiative being tested by the U.S. Department of Labor that allows employers to avoid extra penalties if they discover an accidental labor law violation and voluntarily disclose it.

It's Easier Than Ever to Not Compensate Interns, But There's a Catch

February 02, 2018

John Ho, chair of Cozen O'Connor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration practice, discussed with the Greenwich Time about the recent updates of the unpaid internship guidelines from the U.S. Department of Labor.

Cozen O’Connor Serves as Lead Counsel in Acquisition and Financing of Ozone Park Manufacturing Facility

November 27, 2017

The national real estate practice at Cozen O’Connor represented Greenpoint Manufacturing and Design Center Local Development Corporation (GMDC) in the acquisition, development, and financing of an Ozone Park manufacturing facility in Queens, New York. The cost of the acquisition and development of the project is an estimated $40 million.

12 Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Named 2017 New York Metro Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

October 19, 2017

Super Lawyers has named 12 attorneys at Cozen O’Connor to its 2017 lists of top practitioners in the New York metro area. Six were recognized as Super Lawyers and six were named “Rising Stars,” a list that recognizes attorneys under the age of 40.

Attorney Watch List: What's In the Forecast for Employment Law?

April 05, 2017

John Ho, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Labor & Employment department, discusses what's trending in employment law in Bloomberg BNA.

Wells Fargo Lawyer Cited Trump Role to Block Probe, DOL Says

January 09, 2017

John Ho, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Labor & Employment department, discusses the Wells Fargo attorney being appointed to the Trump administration in Bloomberg BNA .

19 Cozen O'Connor Attorneys Recognized as New York Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

October 05, 2016

The 2016 New York Metro edition of Super Lawyers Magazine, published by Thomson Reuters, has named 21 Cozen O’Connor attorneys to its list of Super Lawyers and Rising Stars.

John Ho Links Enforcement Efforts to Proliferation of Misclassification Suits

September 06, 2016

John Ho, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Labor & Employment department, links enforcement efforts to proliferation of misclassification suits on BNA.

FLSA: Motel Staff Ineligible for Federal Wage Law Coverage

August 08, 2016

John Ho, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Labor & Employment department, discusses FLSA coverage on BNA.com.

Publications

OSHA Changes COVID-19 Recordkeeping Requirements for Employers (Again) [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

May 22, 2020

On May 19, 2020, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) published revised enforcement guidance detailing when employers must record COVID-19 illnesses. The new guidance reverses course on prior guidance dated April 10, 2020 which relaxed the circumstances when most employers...

OSHA Does an Abrupt Turn In Issuing New Guidance on Recording COVID-19 [Alert]

May 21, 2020

Austin Dieter and John Ho discuss OSHA's most recent guidance on when employers need to record COVID-19 illnesses.

Understanding OSHA’s New Guidance on Recording COVID-19 Cases and Related Employee Privacy Concerns [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

April 15, 2020

On April 10, 2020, OSHA issued additional guidance for employers on their obligations to record COVID-19 cases which can be found here. Prior to this guidance, OSHA made clear that COVID-19 cases may be recordable if a worker is infected as a result of performing work-related duties. Thus,...

Duty to Report Employees Who Test Positive for COVID-19

April 08, 2020

John Ho and Peter Ennis describe whether employers should report, under federal or state law, an employee who has tested positive.

New York State grants COVID-19 Immunity to Health Care Industry

April 06, 2020

David Loh and John Ho discuss New York's new state budget and the Emergency or Disaster Treatment Protection Act, which protects health care professionals from liability that may result from the treatment of individuals with COVID-19.

OSHA Considerations For Working Remotely [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

March 23, 2020

Many businesses are permitting employees to work from home in response to COVID-19 and many more will do so particularly as states like New York have and/or will be restricting the number of employees at the worksite. Does this mean the employer must inspect an employee’s home to ensure that...

Model Coronavirus Response Plan

March 16, 2020

David Barron and John Ho designed a response plan for employers facing coronavirus, along with questions for employees.

Settling an OSHA Citation with Enhanced Abatements? Consider Potential COVID-19 Implications [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

March 05, 2020

It is not unusual for OSHA to request “enhanced abatements” when resolving citations. Enhanced abatement is when an employer agrees to perform certain abatement actions beyond the recognized hazard in the specifically cited standard. For example, if an employer receives a machine guarding citation...

Considerations for Addressing Coronavirus and other Epidemics in the Workplace [HR Headaches Blog]

February 26, 2020

As the evolving coronavirus virus (COVID-19) first discovered in China continues to grow in both China and other countries including the United States, businesses here need to consider a number of factors in preparing a response plan. One of the most challenging issues in dealing with any epidemic...

Addressing an Epidemic in the Workplace: Best Practices and Legal Considerations [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

February 26, 2020

As the evolving coronavirus virus (COVID-19) first discovered in China continues to grow in both China and other countries including the United States, businesses here need to consider a number of factors in preparing a response plan. One of the most challenging issues in dealing with any epidemic...

Recording of Injuries/Illnesses Under OSHA [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

February 24, 2020

As mentioned in our last blog, the time for covered employers to post the OSHA 300A Summary is from February 1 to April 30.  It is also a good time to revisit the issue of what kinds of injuries and illnesses should be recorded as employers sometimes struggle with this fact-sensitive question. OSHA...

Reminder: OSHA 300A Summary to be Posted from February 1 Until April 30 [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

January 31, 2020

It’s that time of year again – for covered employers to post the OSHA 300A, i.e., a summary of the total number of job-related injuries and illnesses that occurred last year.  The OSHA 300 Log is not required to be posted, only the summary. Employers with ten or fewer employees and employers in...

New Year: New OSHA Penalties, Full Commission and New Top Ten List [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

January 24, 2020

As we start the new year, following the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act which Congress passed in 2015, OSHA announced revised increased maximum penalty levels effective January 15, 2020:...

Highlights of OSHA changes to 29 CFR 1926.55 – gases, vapours, fumes, dusts and mists [Chemical Watch]

August 08, 2019

John Ho examines updates to employee exposure limits.

OSHA’s Redesigned Whistleblower Protection Program Website [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

August 02, 2019

OSHA recently announced it redesigned the website for its Whistleblower Protection Program which is found at https://www.whistleblowers.gov/ The website now includes a video that highlights the industries the program covers and provides essential information about the rights and responsibilities...

Soft Tissue Massage Considered First-Aid for OSHA Recordkeeping Purposes [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

July 16, 2019

Most employers with more than 10 employees are required to keep a record of serious work-related injuries and illnesses. However, minor injuries requiring only “first aid” generally do not need to be recorded.  OSHA’s definition of “first aid” is a complete listing of all treatments considered first...

Can OSHA Issue Citations for General-Duty Violations? [SHRM]

April 26, 2019

John Ho wrote about how the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) may need to give employers more-specific guidance for keeping their workplaces free from hazards that may cause death or serious physical harm, according to commissioners in two recent administrative rulings.

Distracted Driving and OSHA [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

February 26, 2019

Although there is no specific standard generally covering distracted driving, OSHA has made clear that the general duty clause may apply. Indeed, OSHA has stated that more workers are killed each year in motor vehicle crashes than any other cause. However, despite this finding, many businesses do...

OSHA Narrows Electronic Recordkeeping Rule [Alert]

February 11, 2019

John Ho discusses the final rule rescinding the requirement for establishments with 250 or more employees to electronically file information from OSHA Forms 300 and 301.

Robots and OSHA [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

January 09, 2019

In Will Smith’s hit movie, I, Robot set in 2035 robots were allegedly governed by the Three Laws of Robotics which were originally created by Isaac Asimov. The first law states, “[a] robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.” This law is not...

It’s a Bird… It’s a Plane… It’s OSHA? [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

December 05, 2018

According to a recent report by Bloomberg Law, OSHA used camera-equipped drones for nine inspections so far in 2018. The Bloomberg report cites to OSHA guidance that indicates the drones were often used at worksites following an accident where it was too dangerous for CSHO’s to enter or be nearby...

Black Friday: Great Deals, Long Lines and OSHA’s General Duty Clause [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

November 15, 2018

Some may remember in 2008, OSHA issued a general duty citation against a national retail store when one of its employees was knocked to the ground and crushed by a crowd of about 2,000 shoppers surging into the store for a holiday sales event. Of course, OSHA does not need a fatality to issue a...

By the Numbers : Business as Usual for OSHA [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

November 12, 2018

According to initial data from OSHA, workplace inspections under the Trump administration in the fiscal year 2018 are about the same as in the final year of the Obama administration. OSHA has conducted 32,020 inspections in 2018, down approximately 1% from the fiscal year 2017....

What’s an “establishment” under OSHA? [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

September 12, 2018

On July 20, 2018, OSHA published a proposed rule to rescind the requirement for establishments with 250 or more employees to electronically submit information from the OSHA 300 Log and 301 form and added a requirement for covered establishments to include the Employer Identification Number with...

A New Roadmap to Avoid Hefty OSHA Fines for Repeat Violations [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

August 28, 2018

The Angelica Textile case had been kicking around OSHA for almost ten years before it was decided by the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission on June 24th by a 2-1 vote with Commissioner James Sullivan,[1] the newest member of the Commission, casting the deciding vote.  The case provides...

A New Roadmap to Avoid Hefty OSHA Fines for Repeat Violations [Labor & Employment Alert]

August 28, 2018

Jeff Pasek and John Ho discuss how the decision in Angelica Textile may impact manufacturers, particularly those businesses with multiple locations.

July 1, 2018 Electronic Submission Deadline [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

June 27, 2018

As a reminder to establishments with 250 or more employees that are currently required to keep OSHA injury and illness records and establishments with 20-249 employees that are classified in specific industries with historically high rates of occupational injuries and illnesses that the deadline to...

Top 10 Things to Know About the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) in the United States [OSHA Chronicle Blog]

May 31, 2018

This article was originally written for the Fasken law firm which is based in Canada.  However, it has some helpful reminders about OSHA that I thought worth sharing here. For Canadian businesses expanding into the United States whether by opening a new facility or a merger and acquisition, there...

Checklist: Satisfying the Minimum Salary Threshold and Salary Basis Test Under the White-Collar Exemption

April 02, 2018

John Ho, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Labor & Employment department, wrote an article for Bloomberg Law discussing the checklist to complete to be classified as an exempt executive, administrative professional, computer, or highly compensated employee.

DOL’s New Internship Test: The Rebirth of the Internship Program?

February 23, 2018

John Ho, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Labor & Employment department, wrote an article for New York Law Journal about the U.S. Department of Labor's internship program.

OSHA and Workplace Violence

October 24, 2017

John Ho, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Labor & Employment department, wrote an article for Occupational Health & Safety Online on violence in the workplace.

Checklist: Avoiding Independent Contractor Liability

October 02, 2017

John Ho, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Labor & Employment Department, discussed with Bloomberg Law whether a worker is an independent contractor or an employee is highly fact sensitive.

Bloomberg Law Checklist: Drafting Independent Contractor Agreements

September 21, 2017

John Ho, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Labor & Employment Department, discusses drafting independent contractor agreements in Bloomberg Law.

OSHA and Ergonomics: The Past, Present and Future

June 22, 2017

John Ho, a member of Cozen O'Connor's Labor & Employment department, discusses OSHA and ergonomics in EHS Today.

Events & Seminars

Past Events

How to Calculate Wage-Related Damages

September 13, 2019 - New York, NY

Wage & Hour Litigation and Compliance 2019

February 12, 2019 - New York, NY

2018 Hot Labor and Employment Law Topics

October 23, 2018 - Fort Lauderdale, FL

Managing Risk and Creating Safe Workplaces

October 12, 2018 - Montreal, Quebec, Canada

ACEC New York Legal Counsel Forum

August 21, 2018 - New York, NY

Making a Living without Harassment

June 19, 2018 - Edison, NJ

2018 Labor and Employment Law Update

June 13, 2018 - Philadelphia, PA

Hot Issues in Labor and Employment Law

April 17, 2018 - Pittsburgh, PA

11th Annual Labor and Employment Law Conference

November 08, 2017 - Washington, D.C.

FLSA Math: How to Calculate Wage-Related Damages

October 24, 2017 - New York, NY

Labor and Employment Law Update

June 14, 2017 - Philadelphia, PA

National Center's 44th Annual Conference

March 26, 2017 - New York, NY

Preparing for DOL’s Final Overtime Rules

October 17, 2016 - Webinar

AABANY Fall Conference 2016: Speak Up

September 24, 2016 - New York, NY

Education

  • St. John's University School of Law, J.D., cum laude, 1997
  • University of Connecticut, B.A., 1992

Awards & Honors

Honoree of the Year 2017, APALSA 

Best Lawyers in America, 2019-2020

New York Metro Super Lawyers, 2013-Present

Leadership Council on Legal Diversity 2019 Fellow

American Bar Association, Labor and Employment Section, Leadership Development Program, 2014

  • New York
  • Connecticut
  • U.S. District Court -- Eastern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court -- Northern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court -- Southern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court -- Western District of New York

American Bar Association Labor and Employment Law Section, Electronic Newsletter Committee, Co-Editor, 2015-2019

American Bar Association Labor and Employment Section, Management Engagement Committee, Vice-Chair, 2019-Present

Asian American Bar Association of New York, Labor and Employment Committee, Co-Chair, 2020-Present

Occupational Safety and Health Law, Fourth Edition, Chapter Editor, ABA, and Bloomberg Law

Connecticut Asian Pacific American Bar Association, Board Member, 2009-Present 

The Fair Labor Standards Act Supplement, Chapter Editor, 2006-Present, ABA and Bloomberg Law