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EEOC Releases Proposed Rule for Employee Wellness Programs

Tags:  (2015 Apr 16th - 5:10pm)

On Thursday, April 16, 2015, the EEOC released its proposed rule for wellness programs that reward participating employees. “The proposed rule amends the ADA regulations to provide guidance on the extent to which employers may use incentives to encourage employees to participate in wellness programs that include disability-related inquiries and/or medical examinations.” The proposed rule will be published in the Federal Registrar on Monday, April 20, 2015. The rule will be open for public comment for sixty days after publication. More information about the proposed rule and submitting comments is available here. The EEOC also released a set of questions and answers on the proposed rulemaking and its impact on workplace wellness programs.

The proposed rule does not address the interplay between wellness programs and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA). This issue will be addressed in subsequent EEOC rulemaking.

Today, the Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS), Labor, and Treasury also issued a set of frequently asked questions to provide clarification regarding wellness programs. Additionally, CMS and the HHS Office of Civil Rights issued their own clarifications on the implementation of wellness programs.