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The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has issued a final rule to protect privacy of workers. The final rule eliminates the requirements for establishments with more than 250 employees to submit information electronically from OSHA forms 300 and 301 to OSHA each year. This rule will better protect personally identifiable information or data that could be re-identified with a particular worker by removing the requirement for covered employers to submit their information from Forms 300 and 301. OSHA will continue to obtain these forms as needed through inspections and enforcement actions.

With preventing routine government collection of information that may be very sensitive, OSHA is avoiding the risk that such information might be publicly disclosed under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).This rule will allow OSHA to focus its resources on initiatives that have previously been useful, such as: including continued use of information from severe injury reports that helps target areas of concern, and seeking to fully utilize a large volume of data from Form 300A. The agency is also amending the recordkeeping regulation to require covered employers to electronically submit their Employer Identification Number (EIN) with their information from Form 300A. The final rule’s requirement for employers to submit their EIN to OSHA electronically along with their information from OSHA Form 300A will make the data more useful for OSHA and Bureau of Labor Statistics, and could reduce duplicative reporting burdens on employers in the future.

For more information on how this or other OSHA regulations may affect your organization, please contact Joseph F. Spitzzeri.

For more information on the final rule, click here for the OSHA news release.