The ruling in the AARP v. EEOC case may be detrimental to employers and their healthcare plans because the EEOC may either reduce the percentage of its allowable inducement (or penalty) below 30% of the employee cost for participation in any employer-sponsored “wellness” program to be considered voluntary or possibly return to its former position that any reward or penalty renders participation involuntary.… Read More...

On Monday, September 19, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin issued an opinion finding that penalizing an employee by requiring the employee to pay the entire premium for participation in an employer’s healthcare plan if the employee refused to complete a voluntary health risk assessment to participate in the employer’s wellness program did not violate the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).… Read More...

The EEOC issued its Final Rules on how the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) apply to wellness programs employers offer that request health information from employees and their spouses.[1] The main issue at stake was whether such wellness programs, that require disability-related inquiries and/or genetic information as part of a wellness program, are still voluntary and not mandatory if they offer employees incentives for participating. … Read More...

The EEOC’s thwarting of otherwise compliant wellness programs under the auspices of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a bone of contention for many in our industry, me included. So I was intrigued to learn that a Wisconsin federal district court recently ruled that an employer may require mandatory participation in its wellness program as a condition of participating in the employer’s group health plan under the ADA’s safe harbor provision.… Read More...

The EEOC has issued its long-awaited guidance on wellness programs and what is considered involuntary under the ADA.  The EEOC is the administrative agency charged with enforcing the ADA.  It issued a Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) of Proposed Rules on April 16 that provides guidance on the extent to which the ADA permits employers to offer incentives to employees who participate in wellness programs part of a group health plan.… Read More...

812863_90858969I disagree with the EEOC –  an employer does not violate the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by offering health insurance premium discounts to those who participate in its wellness program.

Orion Energy Systems, Inc., a publicly traded company based in Manitowoc, WI, was sued by the EEOC on August 20, 2014, in an action pending in federal court in Green Bay, WI. … Read More...