Have You Met GINA?


As you prepare to baste (or just consume!) another turkey this year, we wanted to give you a little pre-Thanksgiving feast regarding the Genetic Information Non-Discrimination Act (GINA).

First, the basics. The GINA applies to all employers who have at least 15 employees as well as employment agencies and labor organizations. It prohibits employers not only from using genetic information to discriminate against or harass employees or applicants, but from even requesting such information, except in the limited circumstances described below. In the specific instances where it is “OK” to request genetic information, it still must be kept confidential and cannot be used to discriminate against or harass the individual.

The GINA provides the same damages for violation as the ADA and Title VII (including recovery of punitive damages and attorney fees!). It also has a posting requirement like the FMLA.

Please see full alert below for more information.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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