Financial Sanctions at Work Safety

Financial Sanctions at Work Safety

In January 2018, financial sanctions were imposed on violations of work safety laws under the Law for the Enhancement of Enforcement of Labor Laws, 5712 - 2018.

In contrast to the criminal penalties for work safety violations that were low and insignificant, the amounts of administrative financial sanctions are high - ranging from NIS 20,000 to NIS 35,000 per violation of a corporation, and between 10,000 and 17,000 per violation of individuals. If the violation continues or is repeated within two years of the first violation, further monetary sanctions are imposed. These amounts are set for each breach - and if there are a number of violations - the amounts will be cumulative. According to the provisions of the law, financial sanctions can be imposed on breaches of the safety laws also on the entity that invited the execution of the work - and not only on the entity that executes the construction operation or occupies the workplace. In other words, execution of works by contractors or subcontractors may expose the entrepreneur to financial sanctions and civil and criminal liability if they have not taken reasonable measures to maintain the safety of the employees of the contractor.

It is customary to think that financial sanctions for violations of labor safety laws are intended only for construction work, but that is not the case. The law also provides for financial sanctions on many activities that are carried out not only in construction but also in industry - such as work at heights, lifting machines, lifting equipment, safety and improvement orders provided by the Labor Inspection Organization Law, management of training manuals and preparation of a safety management plan.

On the criminal level, the law states that the payment of a financial sanction does not detract from the criminal responsibility of an employer. Criminal liability may be imposed by law on the employer, the customer and the general manager of the corporation. It follows that the payment of a monetary sanction does not always bring the desired silence - since if an indictment is subsequently filed, the very imposition of the financial sanction and its payment can be seen as an evidence during the course of the trial.

In view of the change in this legal climate, early preparations are required for such financial sanctions. It is very important for business entrepreneurs to carefully examine the legal documents between them and the contractors - whether construction contractors or other contractors. Many documents - from auction tenders to on going documents of work authorizations and supervision, can ultimately determine civil and criminal liability. Our attorneys are very familiar with the issue of safety on the one hand, and we have extensive experience with financial sanctions on the other hand.

We can assist you in both preparing your organizational background and reducing your legal exposure due to the risks of financial sanctions and if financial sanctions are imposed - to represent you in order to cancel or reduce the sanctions.