Middlesex County and New Jersey Trial Lawyers BLOG

What Are Whistleblower Protections?

Posted on July 25, 2014 by Spevack Law Firm

Employees often know firsthand about their company’s business dealings, including any dishonesty or fraud. In the past, workers feared retaliation if they chose to bring attention to the corruption, so the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) helps enforce several laws to protect “whistleblowers.” Whistleblowers report misconduct in an industry or even in their own workplace. Workplace retaliation against whistleblower activities, either from management or from other employees, is a violation of federal law. The Whistleblower Act of 1989 prohibits retaliation against employees of government agencies who report agency misconduct. The Sarbanes–Oxley (SOX) of 2002 extends similar protections to accounting and investment firms. According to the SOX law, employers can be fined or even imprisoned if they intentionally retaliate against a whistleblower who provided truthful information to law enforcement about a criminal offense. Retaliation can take many forms, including: Firing or laying off Demoting Denying overtime or promotion Denying…
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Who Is Responsible for Safety in the Workplace?

Posted on July 18, 2014 by Spevack Law Firm

On any construction site, management is responsible for identifying workplace hazards and handling them proactively before workers get hurt. To do their job properly, management has to stay informed about safety policies imposed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and make sure those policies are enforced in the workplace. Falls lead to more deaths in the construction industry than any other workplace hazard, and more than 100,000 workers are seriously injured by falls every year. For that reason, OSHA has numerous safety requirements addressing fall safety to help prevent accidents. Incomplete roofs and open skylights can be hazardous, because equipment can fall through the hole and injure workers below. If workers fall through the opening, they risk being seriously injured, paralyzed or even killed. Due to the substantial risk, workers must have guardrail protection if they are exposed to a drop of six feet or more. Toeboards can…
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Maplewood Bottling Plant Fined Heavily by OSHA

Posted on July 11, 2014 by Spevack Law Firm

At any facility, management is in charge of more than simply managing workplace hazards. They also provide employees with information that can help prevent accidents in the future. When workers do not have the information they need to do their jobs safely and effectively, the resultant mistakes can be costly. Maplewood Beverage Packers LLC underwent an investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) after a temporary worker was injured falling off a ladder. The violations they found resulted in more than $150,000 in citations for Maplewood and Corporate Resource Services Corp., who assigned the temporary worker. The bottling plant failed to provide workers with annual audiograms or install machine guarding, resulting in multiple health and safety violations. Audiograms help detect hearing loss and machine guards protect workers from moving parts. In a crisis, workplace procedures can make a significant difference in worker safety. By…
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