"In response to this increased risk, we have developed a comprehensive MIOSHA manual that addresses the areas most cited by MIOSHA inspectors."
With the current economic climate, many businesses are having to re-evaluate their workforce and reduce the number of employees based on economic constraints. This can result in terminated employees filing complaints with various agencies regarding alleged labor violations, including MIOSHA violations. Inspections by governmental agents under MIOSHA can be very costly both in time and money to a business. In response to this increased risk, we have developed a comprehensive MIOSHA manual that addresses the areas most cited by MIOSHA inspectors. It should be noted that MIOSHA inspections do not only occur in manufacturing businesses but can occur in all types of businesses.
Many businesses do not have a full understanding of their rights when a MIOSHA inspector walks in the door unexpectedly to conduct an inspection. For example, employers are entitled to a pre-inspection conference, they may appoint a representative to walk with the inspector during the inspection, and many more rights are available to protect an employer. At the very least, each business should have a plan in place before an inspection occurs. A designated employer representative should prepare a MIOSHA inspection plan, with names and telephone numbers of top management and counsel to contact immediately. Also, a prepared and updated list of trade secrets to be protected should be readily available due to the fact that citation information is available via the Freedom of Information Act, and to protect trade secrets, an employer must, at the beginning of the inspection, identify the trade secrets that should be protected. Other management personnel should be trained not to consent to an inspection without proper procedures being followed. The more people involved in an inspection usually results in more inconsistent statements to the inspector and thus more scrutiny.
If you are interested in discussing this matter further, please contact me and I would be happy to provide you with more information regarding how you may want to proceed to protect your company with respect to possible MIOSHA inspections and other labor related types of claims.
Dan A. Penning