Occupational Safety and Health Law, Fourth Edition


Occupational Safety and Health Law is a complete guide to workplace safety and health law, how it works, and how it affects clients. It covers the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSH Act), the Mine Safety and Health Act, workers’ compensation laws, the whistle-blower protection statute, penalties, major cases, and more.


Occupational Safety and Health Law is the authoritative resource on the OSH Act and accompanying regulations. Now updated in its Fourth Edition, it examines employer obligations to protect employees from occupational hazards, and provides clear analysis of how the law works - and how it affects clients. It examines many aspects of workplace safety and health law, including recordkeeping and reporting, the general duty clause, penalties, employer defenses, workers’ rights and union participation, and appeals, together with agency pronouncements and interpretations. Additional highlights include: 

  • Updates on increased penalty levels and enforcement developments
  • Information regarding OSHA’s changes to employer reporting obligations
  • Changes in the enforcement and interpretation of standards and the general duty clause by the courts and the Commission
  • Agency perspectives and interpretations of employee walkaround rights and safety incentive programs

The Fourth Edition also analyzes the Mine Safety and Health Act (MSHA), workers’ compensation laws, whistleblower protection statutes, and related state laws. It also discusses OSHA’s Hazard Communication Standard, describes the changes and ongoing litigation related to the standard, and explains MSHA’s implementation of the MINER Act following changes to mine safety legislation. 

Handy reference materials include the text of the OSH Act, a summary of state plans and state plan information, a table of cases, and a detailed index. 


  • Safety and Health Law Before the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970
  • Legislative History of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970
  • The Duty to Comply With Standards
  • The General Duty Clause
  • Employer Obligations to Develop, Maintain, and Disseminate Information
  • Defenses
  • Inspections and Citations
  • The Warrant Requirement in OSHA Inspections
  • Types and Degrees of Violations
  • Civil Penalties and Criminal Sanctions
  • OSHRC Procedure and Adjudication
  • Judicial Review of Enforcement Proceedings
  • Development of OSHA Standards
  • Judicial Interpretations of OSHA's Standard-Setting Authority
  • Procedural Issues and Judicial Review
  • Variances
  • Rights of Workers and Their Representatives
  • Discrimination Against Employees for Health and Safety Activities
  • State Regulation of Occupational Safety and Health
  • The Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977
  • National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
  • Relationship of the OSH Act to Other Federal Laws and Agencies
  • The OSH Act, Workers' Compensation, and Workplace Tort Liability
  • The Americans With Disabilities Act and the Family and Medical Leave Act
  • Appendices/Table of Cases/Table of Laws and Rules/Index


Gregory N. Dale is a partner with Faegre Baker Daniels LLP in Indianapolis, IN. He serves as national or regional Workplace Safety/OSHA counsel for employers in many industry sectors, is a Fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers, and has been recognized by Chambers USA in its Guide to America’s Leading Business Lawyers in the field of labor and employment law.

Katherine Tracy is a Policy Analyst at the Center for Progressive Reform (CPR) in Washington, DC. She leads CPR’s Workers’ Rights program and works with law professors from around the country to promote enhanced worker protections through research, analysis, and advocacy. 


ISBN: 978-1-68267-498-7


"Whenever I have a question of substance or procedure under the OSH Act or OSHA’s standards, regulations or rules, Occupational Safety and Health Law is my first stop. If it is not also my last, the last is usually a resource to which the treatise has pointed me. I could not do without it. And the Third Edition takes the earlier superb editions to even greater heights. Every OSHA practitioner, however infrequent, should have the volume within easy reach." 

Eric E. Hobbs

Shareholder and Chair of the Workplace Safety and Health Practice Group, Ogletree Deakins, Milwaukee, WI (on the Third Edition)

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