Court Freezes Injury Rule for Small Firms

For the time being, small companies do not have to comply with California's ground-breaking regulation to curb repetitive-motion injuries in the workplace. An appeals court in Sacramento issued a temporary stay of an expansion that would apply the standard to small companies. The regulation, which went into effect in July, requires employers to take remedial measures after two or more workers performing the same task are injured in a single year. In October, Sacramento County Superior Court Judge James Ford struck down an exemption for companies with fewer than 10 employees. The 3rd District Court of Appeals issued a stay of Ford's order pending a decision by the appellate court. The regulation remains in force for companies with 10 or more workers. It has been opposed by business groups that contend there is too little scientific evidence to support the potentially costly rule. Labor groups say the standard is too lax.

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