Wellness Programs Employer Group Health Plans

News & Analysis as of

EEOC v. Flambeau, Voluntary Plans, the Insurance Safe Harbor, and the Future of Wellness Programs

The benefits world was set abuzz late last year with Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. Flambeau, Inc., in which the Federal District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin upheld the validity of Wisconsin-based...more

Employment Law Navigator – Week in Review - March 2016

Last week, Vitality Group, a health services firm, announced a new program designed to lower healthcare costs for its clients. Employees of a handful of companies, including John Hancock, Amgen, and others, will get a chance...more

EEOC Loses Another Wellness Case, Part 2 – Beware the ACA Penalties

In my last blog post, I discussed a recent loss by the EEOC in its efforts to limit the ability of employers to require employees to complete health risk assessments (HRAs) or biometric screenings in order to enroll in the...more

You May Be Discriminating Based On Employee Genetics

Federal Anti-discrimination Law Likely To Be Strengthened In 2016 - The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) is one of the newer federal anti-discrimination laws in the country, and one that requires...more

Quirky Question #270: A Win for Wellness Plans

Question: Our company offers employees a self-funded and self-insured health plan. We’d now like to implement a wellness program. Can we require employees to complete a health risk assessment which requests personal medical...more

EEOC Loses Another Wellness Case, Part 1

The EEOC has been bringing lawsuits against employers challenging wellness programs. A recent case involved a company that had previously provided a credit to employees enrolled in the health plan who participated in a health...more

Another Win for Wellness: The Erosion of Voluntary Participation

Consider the following wellness program scenario: A company implements a program that incentivizes employees to take a health risk assessment and undergo biometric screening. The assessment asks questions about the...more

Employee Wellness Programs Challenged By EEOC (UPDATE)

UPDATE - Workplace efforts by employers to encourage employees to take better care of themselves have become increasingly common in recent years. A chief reason behind the growth in employee wellness programs is that...more

Employee Wellness Programs Challenged By EEOC

Workplace efforts by employers to encourage employees to take better care of themselves have become increasingly common in recent years. A chief reason behind the growth in employee wellness programs is that employers can...more

EEOC Denied in Attempt to Apply ADA Rules to Wellness Plan Tied to Group Health Plan

On the last day of 2015, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin ruled against the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) in its suit against an employer under the Americans with Disabilities...more

Big Employer Win in Wellness Program Case EEOC v. Flambeau

For the past couple of years, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has been challenging employer wellness programs for their alleged violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The most recent...more

Federal Court Says Employer’s All-or-Nothing Requirement that Employees Submit to Wellness Program or Lose Health Insurance is...

Last month, a district court in Wisconsin dealt a blow to the EEOC and the future of its proposed ADA wellness program regulations. In EEOC v. Flambeau, Inc., the court held that that an employer did not violate the...more

District Court to EEOC: Leave Wellness Enough Alone

A Wisconsin federal district court dismissed (with prejudice) a complaint by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) that a company’s wellness program violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The EEOC...more

Flambeau Inc. Wellness Program Testing Falls Within ADA Safe Harbor

On December 30, 2015, a federal judge in the Western District of Wisconsin ruled in favor of Flambeau, Inc. (Flambeau) and against the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) in holding that Flambeau’s medical exams as...more

Another Judge Puts the Breaks on EEOC Wellness Plan Overreach

Our firm has acknowledged recently that there are some questions about the authority of the EEOC to issue its proposed wellness regulations that claim legitimacy under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Just before...more

All Is Well For Employers: Three Things You Need To Know About Court Ruling In Wellness Program Lawsuit

A federal judge in Wisconsin just issued a key ruling upholding an employer’s wellness program despite a challenge from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The decision, published on December 31, 2015, is a...more

2015 End of Year Plan Sponsor “To Do” List Health & Welfare

As 2015 comes to an end, we are pleased to present you with our traditional End of Year Plan Sponsor “To Do” Lists. Like last year, we are presenting our “To Do” Lists in three separate Employee Benefits Updates. Part 1 of...more

Six Quick Takes On The EEOC’s New Wellness Proposal

Last week, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued a proposed rule on employer wellness programs and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act. In April, the EEOC issued a proposed rule on employer wellness...more

New FAQs on Preventive Services, Wellness Program Rewards and Mental Health and Substance Use Treatment: McGuireWoods Healthcare...

This is the 54th in a series of WorkCite articles concerning the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and its companion statute, the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 (referred to collectively as the...more

New Affordable Care Act FAQs Provide Guidance on Preventive Services, Wellness Programs and Mental Health Parity

On October 23, 2015, the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services and Treasury (the “Agencies”) jointly released their twenty-ninth (XXIX) set of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Affordable Care Act (ACA)...more

Recent Government-Issued FAQs Cause Plan Sponsors to Clarify Preventive Care and Wellness in Health Plan Communications

On October 23, 2015, the U.S. Departments of Labor (DOL), Health and Human Services (HHS), and Treasury issued frequently asked questions (FAQs) on the implementation of preventive care and wellness provisions of the...more

“Make It a Triple”: EEOC Supersizes Wellness Program Rules, Again

In June 2013, DOL, HHS and IRS explained that they view employer-sponsored wellness programs as narrow exceptions to the ACA’s health status discrimination prohibition. Early this year, the EEOC slathered-on its own rules,...more

Wellness Rewards Under GINA

The EEOC has issued proposed regulations addressing the legality of inducements for spousal participation in wellness programs under the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA). The original GINA regulations...more

Health Conscious? The EEOC Is Expanding Incentives for Employees’ Spouses

Employee wellness programs are frequently a source of ulcer-causing angst for employers, but the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is making moves to treat some of the underlying issues. Late last week, the EEOC...more

BREAKING: EEOC Issues Proposed Rule On Wellness Programs And The GINA

The proposed rule clarifies that an employer may offer, as a part of its health plan, a limited incentive to an employee whose spouse is covered under the employee’s health plan; receives health or genetic services offered by...more

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