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Chao v. Villa Marina Yacht Harbor -- Protecting Small Business in OSHRC Proceedings

Author: R Stell Date: August 09, 2005

The NFIB Legal Foundation filed an amicus brief with the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission, urging it to find in favor of Villa Marina Yacht Harbor, a small business in Fajardo, Puerto Rico. At issue was an OSHA citation Villa Marina received, and whether the Review Commission has the power to consider Villa Marina‚Äôs contest of the citation when that contest is excusably late. Businesses have 15 working days to appeal OSHA citations. Because of an employee error, Villa Marina filed its contest two days late. The Review Commission has the power to consider contests of citations that are excusably late, but that power has been eroded by a recent court decision, Chao v. Le Frois Builders (referenced above). The NFIB Legal Foundation also filed an amicus brief in Le Frois. 

Status: Decided. Amicus brief filed Nov. 19, 2002. OSHRC decided the case in favor of OSHA March 5, 2003, and declined to address whether it has authority to grant employers relief for excusable lateness in contesting OSHA citations.

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