Abortion Laws by State: These Are Your Rights

The Supreme Court officially overturned Roe v. Wade, giving states the right to set their own abortion laws. These are the states where abortion is legal—and the states where abortion is restricted.

By Sarah Cottrell and Tracy Collins Ortlieb

In the landmark 1973 case of Roe v. Wade, the U.S. Supreme Court recognized a person’s constitutional right to abortion but maintained that states could prohibit the procedure once the fetus reached viability—the point at which a fetus is capable of sustaining life outside the womb—if those policies met certain requirements. On June 24, the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in a 6-3 decision, paving the way for states to limit access to abortions—or make it illegal entirely.

Despite the bleak outlook for abortion rights around the country, there are still areas where abortion is legal and will likely remain legal. According to the Guttmacher Institute, which tracks abortion rights, policy, and statics, there are 16 states including the District of Columbia where abortion rights are protected as of June 1. The following is a quick breakdown of those 16 states and what they’ve done to protect abortion rights.

States Where Abortion Is Legal

These states have codified the right to abortion throughout pregnancy without state interference:

  • Colorado
  • District of Columbia
  • New Jersey
  • Oregon
  • Vermont

These states protect the right to abortion prior to viability or to protect the life of the pregnant person:

  • California
  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Hawaii
  • Illinois
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Nevada
  • New York
  • Rhode Island
  • Washington

With the fall of Roe, here’s a look around the country to see where abortion rights stand, state-by-state. Given that many of these laws are quickly changing, it is important to note that you should always check with your state for any updates.

Abortion Laws by State—as of June 2022:

Alabama — In 2021, Gov. Kay Ivey signed HB237, requiring providers to “preserve the life of a child who is born alive” following an abortion or attempted abortion, and granting the “same rights, powers, and privileges” granted “any other child born alive at any location in this state.”

Alaska — Abortion has been legal at all stages of pregnancy in Alaska since 1967. In 2017 and then again in 2019, Republican-led legislators attempted to ban abortion in Alaska, but they were not successful.

Arizona — In 2021, Gov. Doug Ducey signed SB1457, banning abortions sought solely due to genetic abnormalities. The bill further bans mail delivery of abortion-inducing medication and restricts organizations that provide abortion care from receipt of state funds.

Arkansas — Abortion is legal in Arkansas for up to 22 weeks of gestation. In 2021, Gov. Asa Hutchinson signed SB6, the Arkansas Unborn Child Protection Act—a near-total abortion ban. However, the law was later found to be unconstitutional and was thus blocked by a federal judge.

California — Abortion is legal up to the 25th week of pregnancy.

Colorado — In 2022, Colorado passed HB 22-1279 codifying a citizen’s right to an abortion throughout a pregnancy.

Connecticut — Abortion is legal up to the 25th week of pregnancy. In 2022, HB 5414 was signed into law, which protects citizens and organizations in Connecticut when they are sued by other states for aiding a person in getting an abortion. HB 5414 allows for these people and organizations to counter-sue for damages.

Delaware — Delaware allows abortion up to the 20th week of gestation.

Florida — In 2022, Florida signed into law HB 5, which restricts abortions after 15 weeks and has no exceptions for rape, incest, or human trafficking.

Georgia — In 2019, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp signed into law a “heartbeat bill” banning abortions after a fetal heartbeat can be detected—as early as six weeks into a pregnancy. The law was challenged but is being held up by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals pending the Supreme Court’s decision on Dobbs v. Jackson.

Hawaii — In 2021, Gov. David Ige signed HB576, allowing some nurses and qualified medical professionals to perform abortions. Abortion is legal up to the 25th week of pregnancy.

Idaho — In 2021, Gov. Brad Little signed HB366, mandating that physicians check for a fetal heartbeat, and banning abortion if a heartbeat is detected, except in the case of a medical emergency. The bill is paused to go into effect when and if a federal appeals court upholds a similar heartbeat ban.

Illinois — Illinois abortion laws allow for the procedure up to the 25th week of pregnancy. In 2022, the Parental Notice of Abortion Act (PNA) was repealed and replaced by the Youth Health and Safety Act, which affirms the rights of citizens to reproductive health decisions without harmful barriers.

See also  Oprah.com: 10 New Exercises for Women.

Indiana — In 2022, abortion is legal in Indiana for up to 20 weeks, but with many restrictions including required state-directed counseling to discourage abortion, an 18-hour waiting period, insurance cannot cover the cost of abortion except in the case of rape, incest, or the mother’s life is in danger, minors must have parental permission, and the pregnant person is required to have an ultra-sound.

Iowa — In 2018, the Iowa Supreme Court struck down the state’s unconstitutional 72-hour abortion waiting period. In 2022, Republican lawmakers are working to amend the state’s constitution to overturn that ruling. Abortion is legal in Iowa up to the 20th week of pregnancy.

Kansas — In January, the state legislature voted to refer an amendment to the state’s constitution in a special election slated for August 2022. HCR 5003 would amend the state’s constitution to affirm that there is no constitutional right to abortion or government funding for abortion, although the Legislature may pass abortion-related laws in cases of incest or rape and when the mother’s life is endangered. In 2022, abortion is legal for up to 20 weeks, but it includes many restrictions including a 24-hour waiting period, required state-directed counseling to discourage abortion, minors must have parental permission, and more.

Kentucky — In 2021, the state legislature enacted SB9, requiring physicians to “give medically appropriate and reasonable life-saving and life-sustaining medical care and treatment to all born-alive infants,” including preserving the life of a fetus delivered alive after an abortion. Lawmakers further enacted measure HB2, granting the state’s attorney general greater authority over abortion clinics that violate state laws. As in Kansas, the legislature also approved measure HB91, which would amend the state’s constitution by asserting that there is no constitutional right to abortion or required government abortion funding. The measure will appear on the ballot in the state’s November 2022 general election.

Louisiana — In 2021, Gov. John Bel Edwards signed HB578, requiring providers to inform patients about the potential for a medication-induced abortion “reversal,” similar to the Indiana measure. Edwards also signed HB357, which amends the state’s judicial bypass system for minors, and requires that minors may only petition a judge for an abortion without a parent’s consent within their own local jurisdiction rather than in the areas of the state where abortion clinics are located. According to the Guttmacher Institute, there are four abortion clinics in Louisiana; in its 2017 report, 94 percent of Louisiana counties had no clinics that provided abortions, and 72 percent of Louisiana women lived in those counties. Both laws were effective Aug. 1.

Maine — Abortion is legal up to the 24th week of pregnancy.

Maryland — Abortion is legal up to the 25th week of pregnancy. In 2022, Maryland passed the Abortion Care Access Act or HB 937, which provides funding and access to reproductive care including prevention, abortion, and other services. There is currently a push to repeal this act by bringing it to voters in November 2022.

Massachusetts — Abortion is legal up to the 24th week of pregnancy, with exceptions made for cases of maternal life and health.

Michigan — Abortion is legal in Michigan up to 19.6 weeks gestation following a mandatory 24-hour waiting period. In 2022, a Michigan judge pre-emptively blocked an old 1931 law that would make abortion illegal in Michigan should Roe be overturned.

Minnesota — Abortion is legal up to the 25th week of pregnancy, however, there are restrictions including required state-directed counseling, parents of a minor must be notified, and there is a 24-hour wait period.

Mississippi — In March 2019, Gov. Phil Bryant signed a “heartbeat bill” banning abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected. The law was immediately blocked in the courts and has been challenged in a lawsuit called Dobbs v. Jackson, which is the case that the Supreme Court ruled on to overturn Roe v. WadeAbortion is currently legal in Mississippi, however not without some of the worst restrictions in the country.

Missouri — Missouri’s Governor Mike Parson signed a law in 2019 banning most abortions in the state after the eighth week of pregnancy, one of the strictest bans in the U.S. It bans abortion in almost all cases, including when the pregnancy resulted from rape or incest, but allows exceptions when the mother’s life is in danger. Abortion is currently legal in Missouri up to the 25th week of pregnancy.

See also  Forbes: Proven Benefits of Mindfulness and Meditation.

Montana — In 2021, Gov. Greg Gianforte signed into law three bills restricting abortion: HB136 bans abortion at 20 weeks, HB140 requires doctors to offer patients an opportunity to view an ultrasound and hear a fetal heartbeat before an abortion, and HB171 adds regulation to how medication-induced abortions can be administered, such as requiring that the drugs used in the procedure be provided by a qualified medical practitioner. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, such laws seek to block the use of telemedicine for prescribing abortion-inducing medication, a practice that became widespread during the pandemic.

Nebraska — In 2019, Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts tweeted, “Nebraska is a pro-life state, and we support the brave pro-life champions and their work in Alabama and Georgia.” In 2022, abortion is legal up to 20 weeks gestation, but not without a long list of harsh restrictions that includes state-directed counseling, limitations on how to pay for an abortion, and burdensome requirements on clinics that provide abortion services.

Nevada — Nevada law allows mothers to have a doctor-induced abortion within the first 24 weeks of pregnancy. After 24 weeks, abortion in the state is legal if the mother’s life or health is in danger. In 2019, Nevada state legislators passed a new bill—the Trust Nevada Women Act—which modifies state statute to eliminate requirements to verify the age of mothers seeking abortion and the requirement that doctors obtain written consent that would preclude coercion by a third party. The bill would also remove criminal penalties for providers of abortion-inducing drugs and allow non-doctors to perform abortion procedures.

New Hampshire — Abortion is legal for up to 24 weeks.

New Jersey — New Jersey does not have any abortion restrictions.

New Mexico — In 2021, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham approved measure SB10, repealing abortion restrictions in the state that previously predated Roe v. Wade, including criminal penalties for certain abortions. New Mexico does not have any abortion restrictions.

New York — New York does not have any abortion restrictions.

North Carolina — Abortion in North Carolina is legal for up to 20 weeks. A pregnant person must receive state-directed counseling that includes information designed to discourage them from having an abortion, and then wait for 72 hours before the procedure is provided; they must also undergo an ultrasound before obtaining an abortion, and the provider must offer them the option to view the image. The parent of a minor must consent before an abortion.

North Dakota — Abortion in North Dakota is legal up to 22 weeks gestation. A pregnant person must receive state-directed counseling that includes information designed to discourage them from having an abortion, and then wait 24 hours before the procedure is provided. The parents of a minor must consent before an abortion.

Ohio — In 2021, Gov. Mike DeWine signed measure SB260, prohibiting the use of telemedicine for medication-induced abortions and requiring patients to take an initial dose of any drug in the presence of a physician. DeWine also signed a two-year budget, which included a provision that allows providers to refuse to perform health care services on the basis of religious beliefs, among other abortion-related restrictions. Currently, Ohio allowed abortions for up to 20 weeks of gestation.

Oklahoma — In 2021, Gov. Kevin Stitt signed a bill to immediately outlaw abortion if the U.S. Supreme Court were to overturn Roe v. Wade, widely known as a “trigger” bill. Stitt additionally signed three abortion restrictions into law: HB2441, requiring physicians to check for a fetal heartbeat, banning abortions if a heartbeat is detected except in the case of physical risks for the pregnant person; HB1102, which bans providers from performing abortions outside of medical emergencies and threatens a one-year revoking of their medical licenses; and HB1904, requiring that all abortions be administered by providers who are board-certified in obstetrics and gynecology.

Oregon — Oregon protects the right to abortion throughout the entire pregnancy.

Pennsylvania — Abortion is legal in Pennsylvania up to the 24th week of gestation, although the patient must receive state-directed counseling and wait 24 hours before the procedure is provided.

Rhode Island — Abortion is legal in Rhode Island up to the 24th week of pregnancy. In 2019, Rhode Island codified the legal right to abortion into law by passing the Reproductive Privacy Act.

See also  WebMD: Nutrition for Women at All Ages.

South Carolina — In 2021, Gov. Henry McMaster signed into effect SB1, a ban on abortion when a fetal heartbeat is detectable. The measure, which was temporarily blocked by a federal district court, made exceptions for the pregnant person’s life or, in the case of rape or incest, was fewer than 20 weeks gestation.

South Dakota — In 2022, Gov. Kristi Noem signed HB 1318 into law, which severely restricts access to medication abortion, forcing a pregnant person to make three separate trips to a doctor to obtain abortion pills. Abortion is set to become illegal in South Dakota now that Roe v. Wade has been overturned.

Tennessee — After an initial appointment, there is a 48-hour waiting period before an abortion can be performed. Abortion in Tennessee is illegal after 20 weeks.

Texas — In 2021, Gov. Greg Abbott signed SB8, a so-called “fetal heartbeat” bill, banning abortion as early as six weeks. The bill calls on private citizens to sue people who aid a pregnant person in getting abortions, from medical providers to ride-share drivers to those who gave the pregnant person financial assistance for the procedure. The bill went into effect in late 2021, resulting in what the Guttmacher Institute reported as a “20-fold increase in driving distance” for Texas residents to obtain an abortion. Abbott also signed HB1280, a “trigger” bill that immediately outlaws abortion with the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade.

Utah — In 2019, Utah legislators banned abortions after 18 weeks. In addition, Utah has a “trigger law” on the books, immediately outlaws all abortions since Roe v. Wade was overturned.

Vermont — Vermont has no legal restrictions on abortion.

Virginia — In 2021, Gov. Ralph Northam signed measure SB1276/HB1896, which lifted the state’s abortion coverage ban within some state health insurance plans, and took effect later in that same year. Abortion is legal in Virginia for up to 25 weeks. Post-viability, the procedure can be performed if the pregnancy threatens the mother, is a result of rape or incest or involves fetal impairment.

Washington — In 2021, Gov. Jay Inslee signed HB1009, requiring that college student health plan coverage includes maternity care to “also provide a covered person with substantially equivalent coverage to permit the abortion of a pregnancy.” Abortion in Washington State is legal up to 25 weeks gestation.

West Virginia — In 2021, Gov. Jim Justice signed HB2982, which calls for counseling about the possibility of “reversing” a medication-induced abortion. Patients can receive an abortion up to 20 weeks during their pregnancy.

Wisconsin — While abortion is legal in Wisconsin up to 20 weeks of pregnancy, lawmakers recently introduced a so-called “born alive” bill addressing an extremely rare occurrence in which a baby is born alive during a failed abortion attempt. Under the bill, abortion providers would be required to care for babies that survive an abortion. Failure to do so would be a felony punishable by up to six years in prison and a provider convicted of killing such a baby would face life in prison. During the 2021/2022 legislative session, Republicans tried and failed to pass a “heartbeat bill” modeled after Texas’ SB8.

Wyoming — Gov. Mark Gordon signed the Born Alive Infant-Means of Care bill, which requires physicians and providers to treat any “viable infant aborted alive” with the same care as any other infant born alive. The bill went into effect in July 2021. Wyoming has a “trigger law” HB0092 that makes abortion immediately illegal because Roe v. Wade was overturned.



Verified by MonsterInsights