Complying With OSHA Recordkeeping Requirements

HR Resource
March 8, 2013 — 2,337 views  
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It is mandatory for private sector employers to comply with the 1970 Occupational Safety Act to enable workers comp coverage when required. They are required to record workplace illnesses and injuries under the Occupational Safety and Health Administration or OSHA forms 101 and 200. The mandatory recordkeeping applies to all employers who employ more than ten employees. These records help employees in industries, which fall under high-hazard categories. They also help compile survey material. Additionally, the employees remain informed of their record. The same records are required to be maintained even for employers in plans that are not under federal jurisdiction, but under State jurisdiction.

Records on Illness Including Injuries

The records on illnesses as well as injuries of employees, which are maintained on an annual basis, need not be sent to any agency, not even the OSHA. However, the records must be kept for at least five years and be presented when the inspection of such records is demanded by the OSHA. The following records must be kept:

(i)                The log of occupational illnesses and injuries

(ii)             either (i) or any other similar form

(iii)           Form No.200 from OSHA.

Maintaining the injury and illness records is convenient on the OSHA log. Using a simple marking procedure apart from brief descriptive information, employers can record illnesses and injuries all year long. The yearly brief of injuries and illnesses are recorded in the logbook, which must be posted any day between February 1st, and March 1st of the following year.

Form No. 200

OSHA form 200 documents work related illnesses and injuries. This form is currently replaced by OSHA 300, and OSHA 300-A. While the former is a log, the latter is summary of work related injuries and illnesses. These changes have simplified the recording procedure. The records form the basis of workers comp needed in case of illnesses or injuries. Reporting is necessary if injuries/illnesses are work related (at worksite or work related). These reports are necessary if injury or illness results in (i) death (ii) missed work days (iii) loss of consciousness, or (iv) the medical treatment goes beyond first aid. The employers are expected to make an annual summary of records that must be posted between the 1st of February and the 1st of March, the next year.

Form No. 101

Form 101 records supplementary health information. This information is required about each illness and injury recorded in the log. Apart from the name of the subject, the record describes circumstances under which the illness/injury took place. There are substitute forms like workers comp, which are also used to detail all the needed information. Authorized officials may have access to such records that need to be maintained by the employers. The records are to be maintained for at least five calendar years from the year the recorded incident/injury took place.


Businesses and other concerns that employ 10 or less employees are exempt from mandatory recordkeeping. Certain trades in the retail sector and service industries are also exempt. Yet, those that are exempt and non-exempt must meet OSHA requirements. In other words, they must display the occupation and safety poster. In addition, if there is a workplace accident resulting in at least one fatality or at least three hospitalizations, the incident must be reported within, or not more than eight. Employers in state plans are required to report accidents to an appropriate state agency. Additional recordkeeping, reporting, and posting standards that apply must also be adhered to.

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