Timothy's Law - for Parity-based Mental Health & Chemical Dependency insurance coverage
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Timothy's Law is LAW!

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NYS' Insurance Department website


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Tom O'Clair displays the tattoo on his arm of his son, Timothy
Tom O'Clair and his tattoo in
memory of his son, Timothy

Photo by Dick Blume, May 7, 2003.
Copyright 2005 The Post-Standard.
All rights reserved.
Used with permission of The Post-Standard.

Timothy's Law is named after Timothy O'Clair, a Schenectady boy who completed suicide in 2001, seven weeks prior to his 13th birthday. His suicide was attributed to the discrimination that he faced at the hands of his parent's insurance company, discrimination that exists throughout every private insurance plan in New York State. In order to help prevent other families from having to live through this scenario, the O'Clair family has taken on a personal crusade to change the laws as they relate to the provision of mental health and substance abuse services in private insurance plans throughout New York. This extremely courageous and selfless act has resulted in what we now know as Timothy's Law, which prevents discrimination by prohibiting insurance companies from limiting coverage for mental illness (The law currently does not cover substance abuse disorders).

This website was designed as a tool to help spread the word about Timothy's Law, and to aid the O'Clairs in their quest to pass this life-saving measure. Please take a few minutes to peruse this resource; sign up for Timothy's Team, which will provide you with occasional updates about the status of Timothy's Law and activities you can undertake to help strengthen this law.


Many thanks to Chris O'Clair, Timothy's brother, for creating and maintaining the original Timothy's Law website, and to Kilakwa Associates for their generous donation to make this site possible. Please contact the webmaster at infocenter@mhanys.org with any questions or comments about this site.

Timothy's grave marker
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