On Oct. 30, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued a proposed rule under the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA) defining how employers may obtain voluntary health information from employees’ spouses for purposes of a wellness plan.
GINA prohibits employment discrimination based on genetic information and generally prohibits employers from obtaining genetic information. GINA makes an exception for situations in which an employee voluntarily participates in an employer wellness plan. The proposed rule allows employers to offer an incentive that is a maximum of 30 percent of the total cost of the plan in which the employee and dependents are enrolled. The proposed rule also requires written authorization from the spouse before any collection of health or genetic information. The proposal is open for public comment until Dec. 29, 2015.