Many of you have participated in informal conferences with OSHA and entered into settlement agreements to resolve OSHA citations. It is important to consider the future impact of the settlement agreements not only on future OSHA enforcement, including potential Repeat or Willful citations, but also whether the settlement agreement could be used in other litigation outside of OSHA, such as personal injury litigation, to establish employer liability. This article discusses this potential pitfall which must be considered whenever entering into a settlement agreement with OSHA. It also contains exculpatory language which should be considered for inclusion in an OSHA settlement agreement to protect against such other liabilities.
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