Mental Health Parity Clarification Included in Measures Signed by Bush

December 24, 2008 ( - Among the handful of bills signed into law by President Bush on Tuesday was a measure that conforms the effective date of certain mental health parity requirements for collectively bargained group health plans with the general effective date of mental health parity law.

S.3712 is a technical correction to mental health parity legislation signed into law with the emergency economic stabilization legislation in October (see Mental Health Parity Measure Tacked onto Wall Street Aid Bill ). The new measure clarifies that the mental health parity requirements will not apply to group health plans maintained pursuant to a collective bargaining agreement until the later of the date on which the last of the collective bargaining agreements relating to the plan terminates (without regard to any extension agreed to after October 3, 2008), or January 1, 2010.

Bush also signed into law on Tuesday, the Worker, Retiree and Employer Recovery Act, which includes a one-year moratorium on required minimum distribution (RMD) rules (see Bush SIgns RMD, Pension Relief Bill ).