Continuing a recent trend, the Department of Labor (DOL) and the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) have raised the penalties for violations of employment laws. The Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act was passed in November 2015, kick starting the recent increases. The Act requires federal agencies to adjust civil monetary penalties for inflation on a yearly basis. Both the DOL and OSHA had already done so for 2016, and have further increased the penalties for employment law violations for 2017.
Notable Increases in Employment Law Violation Penalties
There have been many specific changes and increases declared by the DOL and OSHA. Below are a few of the most noteworthy laws that were changed:
- Willful or repeated violations of Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) minimum wage and overtime rules – The DOL raised the penalty for these violations from $1,894 to $1,925 after a jump from $1,100 in 2016.
- Violations of posting requirements for the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) – The penalty for such violations has been increased from $163 to $166 for each separate offense. That is after a larger jump from $110 in 2016.
- Top OSHA penalties for serious violations climbed from $12,471 to $12,675 after previously being $7,000.
- Top OSHA penalties for willful or repeated violations has risen from $124,709 to $126,749 after previously being $70,000.
- The Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) – The penalty for not providing an adequate summary of the coverage and benefits of ERISA to affected individuals will increase from $1,087 to $1,105. The penalty for failing to provide notices to participants in retirement plans informing them of automatic contribution arrangements has increased from $1,632 to $1,659.
- Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) – The penalty for failing to inform employees of CHIP opportunities will increase from $110 to $112.
These new civil penalties are applicable to violations that took place after November 2, 2015 that had a civil monetary penalty assessed after January 13, 2017.
South Jersey Employment Lawyers at the Law Offices of Sidney L. Gold & Associates Represent Those Affected by Employment Law Violations
If you believe your rights as an employee have been violated in some way, the New Jersey employment lawyers of Sidney L. Gold & Associates are prepared to help you with your case. Call our offices at 215-569-1999 or contact us online to set up a consultation today. We proudly serve clients throughout New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New York.