Wellness Programs

News & Analysis as of

EEOC Sues Employer for Allegedly Coercing Employee to Participate in Wellness Program

Employers continue to struggle to understand the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s position with regard to their wellness programs. While conceding the lawful use of such programs and the benefits achieved in terms of...more

Is The EEOC Off The Rails With This New “Wellness” Lawsuit? Don’t Think So.

Last week, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed suit against Wisconsin-based Orion Energy Systems, Inc., over its wellness program and its treatment of ex-employee Wendy Schobert, who was not a fan of the...more

EEOC Sick Over Wellness Programs

Last week, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (the “EEOC”) filed a lawsuit against an employer under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) related to its maintenance of a wellness program. Although far from a...more

Is Your Body Trying To Tell You Something?

Is your body trying to tell you something? Maybe we should stop and listen! If you are like me and like most over-achievers, you don’t sleep much. You push yourself to finish the brief, to write the article or to read the...more

Employee Benefits: Important Wellness Plan and Mental Health/Substance Use Disorder Parity Effective Dates Have Arrived!

Employers and insurers offering medical plans: take note! Two important final regulations issued jointly by the IRS, DOL and HHS (the “Departments”) apply to plan years (or, in the individual market, policy years) beginning...more

Coming Soon To A (Computer) Screen Near You: Your Doctor

Both wellness visits and behavioral health visits would be added to the list of Medicare-covered telemedicine services. And it’s not just follow-up wellness visits that would be covered. Even initial visits qualify,...more

The Affordable Care Act—Countdown to Compliance for Employers, Week 29: Wellness Programs, Smoking Cessation and e-Cigarettes

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) generally prohibits discrimination in eligibility, benefits, or premiums based on a health factor, except in the case of certain wellness programs. Final...more

Guidance On Employer Incentives For Wellness Participation Is On The Way, Says EEOC

Hallelujah! The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission announced this week that it plans to issue guidance on employers’ ability to offer incentives to employees based on their participation in wellness programs, or whether...more

Significant Employment Law Changes and Trends for 2014 and the Need to Update Related Practices, Policies and Forms

Employers constantly face legal compliance and integration challenges in today’s environment of increasingly numerous and complex employment laws. We identify some of the more significant trends and recent changes below. ...more

2014: The Affordable Care Act Is Alive and Well – Are You Ready?

The U.S. Department of the Treasury (Treasury) recently announced yet another delay in the Employer Shared Responsibility (ESR) provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). While this latest suspension in the enforcement of...more

Another Benefits Grab Bag of Guidance and Reminders – Health and Retirement Plans

Preventive Care Expansion for Calendar Plan Year 2015 for Non-Grandfathered or Non-Exempt Plans - The preventive care coverage requirements were updated in September 2013 to include a requirement that there must be...more

Does Your Wellness Plan Need a (Legal) Check-Up?

Wellness plans must comply with complex final regulations that were issued last year by the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and the Treasury (collectively, the “Departments”). To help plans from falling off...more

Welcomed Guidance on Wellness Programs

On June 3, 2013, the Departments of Treasury, Labor and Health and Human Services (Agencies) issued final regulations regarding nondiscriminatory wellness programs in group health coverage under the Affordable Care Act and...more

Recent Guidance on Wellness Programs Clarifies Premium Surcharges for Tobacco Use

As previously reported, the federal agencies responsible for drafting the rules implementing the Affordable Care Act (ACA) (the U.S. Labor Department, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Treasury...more

The Affordable Care Act—Countdown to Compliance for Employers, Week 50: Wellness Programs, Affordability, and Premium Tax Credits

The Affordable Care Act imposes a series of interrelated requirements on individuals, employers and providers. Individuals must maintain coverage or face the prospect of a tax penalty; carriers must offer and renew coverage....more

Welcome 2014: Five Employment Law Trends You Need to Know

Now that we have reviewed the laws that are affecting California employers beginning in 2014, we cast an eye forward to examine employment issues that could impact your workplace in the New Year. Based on our review of...more

Group Health Plans: Year-End Action Items and Upcoming Changes

Group health plan sponsors turn their attention to completing 2013 tasks, implementing upcoming 2014 changes, preparing for the ACA Shared Responsibility requirement in 2015, and documenting recent extensive plan changes....more

Scripts - November 2013

In this issue: - New Wellness Program Rules for 2014 - Now That We Know The Basic Rules… Drafting Covenants Not To Compete To Maximize The Likelihood Of Enforcement - Excerpt from New Wellness Program...more

Workplace Wellness Programs

Recognizing that unhealthy lifestyles affect people of all ages, including those in the workforce, employers are using legally sanctioned incentives in an attempt to change behavior toward better and healthier choices through...more

ACA Not Enough to Save Penn State’s Employee Wellness Program

Recent negative media reports caused Pennsylvania State University to modify its employee wellness program, making clear that considering compliance with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (ACA) alone is...more

WANTED: EEOC Guidance On Wellness Plans Under The ACA

Employee wellness plans have been in the spotlight lately. This is because new wellness plan rules published in the Patient Protection and the Affordable Care Act (informally called Obamacare) are slated to take effect in...more

The Key to a Healthy Corporate Wellness Program

As employers and lawmakers seek creative solutions to rising health-care costs, corporate wellness programs have exploded in popularity. Many employers have embraced corporate wellness programs as a means of controlling...more

Carrot Or Stick? When Does A Voluntary Wellness Program Become Involuntary?

Employer wellness programs, which are designed to stem rising health care costs by encouraging healthy behaviors among employees, are rising in popularity. Such programs will receive another boost when certain provisions of...more

eAlert - How to Comply with the Affordable Care Act: Four Things a California Employer Needs to Know

It’s the single most controversial law passed by Congress in the last 10 years. Business groups spent hundreds of millions of dollars to defeat it in Congress and to have it overturned in the courts. But now, the Patient...more

Wellness Programs Final Regulations

On May 29, 2013, the Departments of the Treasury, Labor and Health and Human Services issued final regulations on wellness programs based on statutory changes made by The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and the...more

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