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Image of building facade of UnitedHealthCare UnitedHealth allegedly would use arbitrary thresholds to trigger review of psychotherapy, often leading to coverage denials when providers couldn’t provide more patient treatment after 20 sessions. (Photo: Shutterstock)

In what’s being touted as “landmark” settlement agreements coming from the first joint state-federal enforcement of mental health parity laws, United Healthcare will pay $14.3 million in restitution to insurance consumers nationwide who were denied or given reduced coverage for mental health and substance use disorder treatments, according to state New York Attorney General Letitia James.

Both New York and federal behavioral-health parity laws underpinning the federal suit that has led to the settlement require coverage for mental health and substance use disorder treatments to be no more restrictive than coverage for physical health issues, according to both court documents and a news release from James’ office announcing the United Healthcare settlements.

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