How do I file a whistleblower complaint with OSHA?

If you believe that your employer is doing something illegal or something that could cause serious harm to you and other employees, then you have every right to report it to the proper authorities. If your employer is violating OSHA laws, you will file your complaint with OSHA. The agency makes it fairly easy for you to do it once you face retaliation.

According to the U.S Department of Labor, you can file a complaint in person, by email, by telephone, by fax, online or by mail. You also do not have to speak English as you can submit complaints in any language.

You do need to ensure that you file your complaint within the set time limits, which vary depending on the statute that offers you whistleblower protection. It could be as little as 30 days after the retaliation action or as many as 180 days. You need to verify the time limit and ensure you file within it.

OSHA will review your complaint by interviewing you first. If it deems necessary, OSHA will then conduct an investigation. The idea is to gather evidence to support your claim and prove or disprove retaliation under the proper whistleblower protection laws.

Since OSHA will be in contact with you first when gathering evidence, it is helpful that you have as much documentation and proof of your claim on hand as possible. You also want to provide OSHA with basic details about the incident and about your job and position. It also helps to have documents from the other actions taken in regards to your whistleblower protections.