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The Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA) was enacted in 1986 as a component of the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985. The emergency physician must ensure that a psychiatric presentation is not masking or coinciding with another illness, such as an occult head injury, metabolic disturbance, or toxic ingestion. It is commonplace for mental health screeners from the community to participate in the evaluation of patients with psychiatric emergencies and assist in locating inpatient availability when the emergency medical condition (EMC) is not stabilized and inpatient care is required. Failure to comply with EMTALA can lead to substantial consequences for hospitals and physicians. Emergency psychiatry involves a broad healthcare team and members vary in their level of responsibility and education. Understanding the requirements imposed by EMTALA is an essential compliance topic for each team member.