The Department of Labor’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (“EBSA”) has provided updated resource materials on its website!
Mental Health Parity:
If you wish to review the compliance of your plan, EBSA has updated the section of their Self Compliance Tool dealing with Mental Health Parity! This self-compliance tool is intended to help group health plans, plan sponsors, plan administrators, health insurance issuers, and other parties determine whether a group health plan is in compliance with some of the provisions of Part 7 of ERISA.
Also along the lines of Mental Health Parity are updated Questions and Answers in the Compliance Assistance Guide!
As a quick review, The Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act of 2008 (“MHPAEA”) was signed into law on October 3, 2008 and became effective for plan years beginning after October 3, 2009. MHPAEA expanded on an earlier law, the Mental Health Parity Act of 1996 (MHPA). On November 8, 2013, the Departments of Health and Human Services, Labor and the Treasury jointly issued final regulations implementing MHPAEA, which became applicable for plan years beginning on or after July 1, 2014.
MHPAEA generally applies to group health plans and health insurance issuers that provide coverage for either mental health or substance use disorder benefits and medical/surgical benefits. These FAQs provide basic information about the important protections MHPAEA provides with respect to parity in coverage of mental health and substance use disorder benefits and medical/surgical benefits provided by employment-based group health plans.