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The tightened rules of the occupational health and safety fines

In order to promote the health of employees and prevent workplace accidents, the Hungarian Government had significantly increased the fines for the breach of occupational health and safety rules as of 1 March 2024. The rule on its amount was removed from the applicable act and its details were laid down in a government decree.

The lower limit of the fines is doubled, (HUF 100,000 per employee) and the upper limit is increased to 10 times the current level, HUF 100 million. The imposed amount depends on various factors such as number of norm violations, the duration of exposure, or the occurrence of occupational accidents or health damage. For example, in the case of an occupational accident or health damage, the fine increases threefold, in the case of a serious occupational accident, tenfold, and twentyfold in the case of a fatal occupational accident.

If the authority has imposed a fine against the employer once within the 3 year period (previously it was two years) prior to the official inspection due to a serious risk, the new fine shall be increased by 1.5 times. As a new rule, in the case of any further fines imposed within three years, the multiplier used for the most recent violation is doubled for each fine.

There are also circumstances that reduce the amount of the fine, thus if the violation is committed by a micro-and small enterprise or a natural person employer, it shall be reduced by 0.8 times and can reach a maximum of HUF 25 million, and in case the violation is committed by a medium-sized employer, it shall be reduced by 0.9 times, and may not exceed HUF 50 million. These rules do not apply if a fatal work accident occurred due to the employer's negligence.