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Leep, Tescher, Helfman And Zanze

Checklist helps employers comply with OSHA record keeping rule

Certain work-related illnesses and injuries are to be recorded on a log known as OSHA’s Form 300. OSHA has set up criteria that employers in California, as elsewhere, must evaluate each injury and illness in the light of so that they will know what to record and what not to. Unfortunately, there is some confusion in this regard; even those who know the criteria can find them to be full of gray areas.

XpertHR, a provider of human resources tools, has come out with a guide to help employers with compliance with OSHA’s record-keeping guidelines. It’s the Top 10 Q&As and Checklist for OSHA Compliance, and it can be accessed online.

The guide gives several real-world scenarios and shows how to evaluate them using OSHA’s criteria. These scenarios include cases of workers losing consciousness, suffering ergonomic injuries, being injured while on business trips and suffering from an injury or illness as a seasonal employee.

OSHA, for its part, requires all injuries that necessitate medical treatment beyond first aid to be recorded. Other injuries that must be recorded include injuries resulting in loss of consciousness, time off work, a transfer to a different job or restrictions in the event that victims continue in the same line of work.

As per workers’ compensation law, those who are injured while on the job can receive benefits like wage replacement and reimbursement for all medical expenses. Unlike with a liability claim, victims are not required to show that their employer or anyone else was negligent. However, victims should know that their employer may resist the claim, saying that they themselves were to blame. A lawyer may be able to assist with the filing and, should the employer do this, with the mounting of an appeal. Settlements are also possible.