Effective January 10, 2011, the EEOC's final regulations implementing the employment provisions of Title II of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 ("GINA") go into effect. Key provisions of the final regulations include: (1) clarification that no specific intent to acquire genetic information is required in order to establish a GINA violation; (2) creation of a "safe harbor" exception for employers who put respondents to requests for medical information on notice of GINA (the regulations provide an example of specified language that can be used to give notice); and (3) clarification that while general inquiries about health or well-being by supervisors/managers (such as "How are you?;" "How is your son?;" "Did they catch it early?") are not prohibited in causal conversations or social media interactions, follow-up probing questions (such as "Do other family members have the same condition?" or "Have you been tested for the condition?") are prohibited by GINA.
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EEOC finalizes GINA regulations
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