NRC Doubles Maximum Fine

The agency has revised its regulations to increase the potential maximum civil penalty for violations of the Atomic Energy Act from $140,000 to $280,000. It applies in all cases assessed after Aug. 1, even if the violation occurred before that date.

On July 1, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission announced that, following changes in federal law, it has revised its regulations to increase the potential maximum civil penalty for violations of the Atomic Energy Act from $140,000 to $280,000.

This mirrors the increases in OSHA penalties that are taking effect in August and reflect inflation since the penalties were last raised by the agency.

The two agencies are doing this to meet the requirements of the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act of 2015, which directs an initial "catch-up" penalty adjustment be made effective by Aug. 1 and then adjusting their penalties for inflation annually starting in January 2017.

The NRC's announcement said the agency may assess penalties up to the new maximum in all cases assessed after Aug. 1, even if the violation occurred before that date.

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