You'd Better Hold Onto Those Sampling Results--OSHA's 30-Year Recordkeeping Requirements

May 2, 2011
Matthew C. Sullivan
Association of Corporate Counsel's "Green-house Counsel"

Among the myriad of regulations promulgated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration ("OSHA") is a wide-sweeping requirement in 29 C.F.R. 1910.1020 to preserve and maintain each "employee exposure record" for at least thirty (30) years. "Employee exposure record" is broadly defined to include air monitoring results and other sampling to detect toxic substances or harmful physical agents in the workplace, including personal, area, grab, and wipe samples. The OSHA standards do not require employers to conduct such sampling or monitoring, but employers often do conduct such activities for any number of reasons. And the OSHA recordkeeping and reporting requirements kick in once a record is created from that sampling or monitoring.

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