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Am I covered by the OSH Act?

The OSH Act covers most private sector employers and their workers, in addition to some public sector employers and workers in the 50 states and certain territories and jurisdictions under federal authority. OSHA covers most private sector employers and their workers in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and other U.S. jurisdictions either directly through Federal OSHA or through an OSHA-approved state program. Workers at state and local government agencies are not covered by Federal OSHA, but have OSH Act protections if they work in those states that have an OSHA-approved state program. Four additional states and one U.S. territory have OSHA-approved plans that cover public sector workers only. State-run health and safety programs must be at least as effective as the Federal OSHA program. To find the contact information for the OSHA Federal or State Program office nearest you, see the Regional and Area Offices map.

Your employer must comply with the applicable State/Federal OSHA regulations that relate to the type of work you and your company performs. If your employer fails to comply with a regulation, OSHA can fine them for violating health and safety standards.

If you are a Federal worker, you are covered by the agency you work for. Federal Agencies are required to maintain safety and health programs meeting the same standards that apply to private employers. The only difference here, is that Federal (except for the U.S. Postal Services) cannot be fined for violating health and safety standards.

Those not covered by the OSH Act include: self-employed workers, immediate family members of farm employers, and workers whose hazards are regulated by another federal agency (for example, the Mine Safety and Health Administration, the Department of Energy, Federal Aviation Administration, or Coast Guard).

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