Why Employers May Not Want to Mandate Vaccinations

Eric B. Meyer with Keen Insight on the Consequence of Employers Mandating Vaccinations.

Eric’s 4/23/20201 email from The Employer Handbook is titled: Why you might not want to mandate COVID-19 vaccinations at work. Plus, Oreo cake, a beverage (or two), and some COBRA.

Employers who require their employees to receive a vaccination might wind up with a recordable incident that hat to be reported to OSHA.

Eric’s Takeaway re: Vaccinations and OSHA Reporting.

“Before I get to that sweet, sweet Oreo cake, check out this little nugget from OSHA’s frequently asked questions (FAQs) and answers related to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic

If I require my employees to take the COVID-19 vaccine as a condition of their employment, are adverse reactions to the vaccine recordable?

If you require your employees to be vaccinated as a condition of employment (i.e., for work-related reasons), then any adverse reaction to the COVID-19 vaccine is work-related. The adverse reaction is recordable if it is a new case under 29 CFR 1904.6 and meets one or more of the general recording criteria in 29 CFR 1904.7.

But, if you merely recommend that employees get a COVID-19 shot, and one of them has an adverse reaction, you don’t need to record it. OSHA is exercising its “enforcement discretion” only to require the recording of adverse effects to required vaccines at this time.

If you dislike OSHA recording requirements, I’d say it’s a no-brainer.


Be sure to consult with savvy risk management professionals and with a lawyer licensed in your state on whether to require employees to do anything as a condition of their employment.

Thank you!

Michael Oswald



Please note: the above post contains educational information. It is not intended as legal advice. Engage an attorney who is licensed in your state to get advice on dealing with any specific legal issue.

© 2021 Michael S. Oswald

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