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Is mandatory HIV testing legal in the workplace (non-healthworker)
Feb 18, 1999

I have been in at my present employer for 2 1/2 years. My employer offers a profit-sharing program which I do not have to contribute any monies. I have been told by the employer that I am eligible for life insurance that is apart of the profit sharing plan. In order to receive the life insurance plan my employer stated that a urine and blood test in required for coverage. Based solely on my right to privacy I denied the test. They then came back and said I have to take a saliva test, "They thought I was hiding something". I found out that the saliva test only tested for HIV. I was under the asumption it was testing for drugs,which I have no problem with. I feel I was mislead and now they are deciding if I can still receive profit-sharing if I refuse the test. Please can you tell me if this is legal to make HIV testing mandatory in a non-health related workplace and where can I find the laws that support that decision? Thank you for your help

Response from Ms. Franzoi

I do not think mandatory testing is legal. However, the situation you describe for the profit sharing plan is very unusual. It is not typical to fund profit sharing plans with life insurance contracts or to have life insurance in a profit sharing plan. I am somewhat unclear on the design of the profit sharing plan with life insurance as a funding vehicle. I would need to know more about the plan's provisions. You might want to discuss this with a legal aid group. If you are in the Los Angeles area, you should check with APLA.

Lynn Franzoi



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