Penalties for workplace safety offences to increase in WA

Premier Mark McGowan on Sunday 27 August 2017 announced an increase of penalties for workplace safety offences to bring Western Australia into line with other states and ensure penalties better reflect the importance of a safe workplace. The amendments will increase penalties for businesses which commit safety offences under the Occupational Health and Safety Act 1984 (OSH Act) for the first time since 2004.

The new penalties will be consistent with the national model Work Health and Safety Act (Model Act), with a further increase for inflation (1.14 per cent) from 2010. Harsher penalties for offenders include increasing the maximum term of imprisonment from two to five years. Moreover, first offence fines for body corporate offenders will also drastically increase. Level 4 first time offences will increase from $500,000 to more than $2.7 million. Level 1 penalties will increase from $50,000 to $456,000.