Six exceptions to employer prohibitions on acquiring genetic information are
- Inadvertent acquisitions of genetic information do not violate GINA, such as in situations where a manager or supervisor overhears someone talking about a family member’s illness.
- Voluntary disclosure: Genetic information (such as family medical history) may be obtained as part of health or genetic services, including wellness programs, offered by the employer on a voluntary basis, if certain specific requirements are met.
- Genetic information may be acquired as part of the certification process for FMLA leave (or leave under similar state or local laws), where an employee is asking for leave to care for a family member with a serious health condition.
- Publically available: Acquisition through commercially and publicly available documents like newspapers is permitted, as long as the employer is not searching those sources with the intent of finding genetic information.
- Where required by law: Acquisition through a genetic monitoring program that monitors the biological effects of toxic substances in the workplace is permitted where the monitoring is required by law or, under carefully defined conditions, where the program is voluntary.
- Forensics Baseline in Law Enforcement Laboratories: Acquisition of genetic information of employees by employers who engage in DNA testing for law enforcement purposes as a forensic lab or for purposes of human remains identification is permitted, but the genetic information may only be used for analysis of DNA markers for quality control to detect sample contamination.
Get this and other info on Genetic Discrimination here.
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