David T. Andrews

ERISA, COBRA and Wellness Programming

David T. Andrews, Attorney for Day Ketterer The threshold issue to determine whether ERISA applies to a wellness program is whether the wellness program rises to the level of a “Group Health Plan.” ERISA defines a Group Health Plan as “an employer-sponsored welfare benefit plan to the extent that the plan provides medical care (…including items and services paid for as medical care) to employees or their dependents directly or through insurance or otherwise.” Many common wellness program initiatives will cause a wellness plan to become a Group Health Plan subject to ERISA, including health risk assessments that provide advice and counseling, employer-paid immunizations and employer-paid biometric screenings (i.e., blood pressure screening, BMI, cholesterol, etc.). In addition, a wellness program can become a Group Health Plan by becoming linked to a Group Health Plan, such as by rewarding employees for Read More

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