Navigating the EEOC Wellness Rule Change

And how Quizzify eliminates (not a misprint!) your risk.

As of January 2019, employers can no longer incentivize or penalize clinical wellness programs which are pitched to employees as “voluntary” but carry significant financial penalties. Additionally, new rules are likely to be delayed until 2020 or possibly 2021.

Companies will be exposed to employee litigation if their wellness programs attach financial consequences to biometric screenings, HRAs, coaching, and other programs requiring personal health information.

Acceptable

Quizzify 

• Fitness Tracker (no weigh-ins) 

• Other “Challenges”

• Lunch-and-learns

Not Acceptable

• Biometric Screens

• Health Risk Assessments

• Check-ups

• Weigh-ins

How do you avoid liability exposure while still maintaining your current program’s incentives or penalties? Add Quizzify as an alternative way to earn them. If the full amount of money at stake can be earned without (to use the official statutory language) “clinical exams or inquiries,” the screening/HRAs would still be considered truly voluntary and the safe harbor would apply. You would not face liability. No need to take our word for this. We guarantee it:

EEOC Indemnification

Offering Quizzify as an alternative makes screenings/HRAs truly voluntary, and removes your program from EEOC jurisdiction. We indemnify you (or if you are a vendor, your customers) for any adverse judgments on cases brought by employees claiming that your wellness program includes “involuntary medical exams or inquiries” as defined under ADA or GINA.

This indemnification covers 80% of any award, up to ten times the total value of your Quizzify contract, following a $5000 per-incident deductible.

Qualifying for Quizzify indemnification is as simple as signing a partnership agreement and posting a version of this flyer:

Additional Reading

 

November 1,2018

"The EEOC expects to issue notices of proposed rulemaking under the ADA and under GINA in June 2019. The proposed revisions will be based on the court’s order, as well as statutory requirements."

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September 22, 2018  

"Workplace Wellness Plans Offer Big Incentives, But May Cost Your Privacy. Workplace wellness programs that offer employees a financial carrot for undergoing health screenings, sticking to exercise regimens or improving their cholesterol levels have long been controversial..."

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July 16, 2018

"A group of screening vendors and their trade associations have drafted a letter to senators in which they reveal their hitherto unpublished level of panic over the December 2018 sunsetting of the EEOC’s safe harbor for incentivized/penalized health risk assessments and biometric screenings."

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June 28, 2018

The EEOC isn’t taking action on wellness regulations, but employers certainly can.

"The current wellness regulations will sunset in January 2019, and the EEOC has made no move to institute new ones, leaving employers in limbo."

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May 30, 2018 

"With the U.S. District Court’s decision to vacate the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's (EEOC's) wellness rule effective January 1, 2019, employers are rightfully scrambling to determine how to react and what the rule revisions mean for their wellness programs... Al Lewis provides his perspective on how employee wellness programs will never be the same."

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January 17, 2018 

EEOC resists judge's deadline for new wellness program rules. "The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission told a federal judge....that the court does not have the power to force the agency to comply with any deadline, or direct the agency to adopt any new rules in the first place."

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January 9, 2018  

Leading Vendors Announce Quizzify Partnerships to Satisfy Forthcoming Wellness Incentive Rules. "By adding Quizzify as a screening alternative, partner vendors avoid the pending upheaval, and none of their customers will have to reconfigure their program incentives or penalties. Quizzify guarantees safe harbor status for all its partners and their employers."

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January 3, 2018 

Surprising Court decision may disallow most wellness incentives. "A federal court ruled...that the [EEOC] must rewrite its definition of “voluntary” to achieve consistency with the dictionary definition. Further, the EEOC must issue rules soon enough for employers to incorporate the new limits for incentives and penalties into their own wellness programs starting in January 2019. Yet...there is a silver lining — and for some employers this could be the best thing ever to happen to their wellness program."

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December 28, 2017 

EEOC wellness regulations will sunset in January 2019. "According to the EEOC, a new wellness regulations draft will be available in August of 2018; final rules will likely take till October of 2019."

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