Wellness Limbo (article)
The implications of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (EEOC) wellness program regulations relating to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) continue to remain in limbo.
In response to Court Order rendered by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia in the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) v. EEOC challenge, the EEOC was to provide a status update to the Court by the end of March, 2018 (see our prior Benefit Beat articles, EEOC Wellness Rules Back in Court, 2/7/18, Wellness Rule Review Fast Track, 1/16/18 and Wellness Rules Under Scrutiny, 9/11/17). In compliance with that request, the EEOC has indicated that while it continues to review its options, the agency will not take any regulatory action to alter the current wellness rules at this time, in part because it is awaiting confirmation of Janet Dhillon to become the new EEOC chairperson.
While the EEOC continues to consider changes to its wellness program rules, it is leaving employers with no guidance on how wellness programs that require the collection of medical information, or that require a physical exam, should be handled beginning January 1, 2019, when the incentive portion of the ADA and GINA wellness program rules is vacated.
We will be addressing wellness programs in our upcoming CBIZ Benefits & Insurance Services webinar on June 19th, Your Wellness Program and the Law: Weighing in on Compliance Issues.