In recent years, abortion has stood out as one of the most controversial topics of all times. The Supreme Court’s ruling over the Roe v. Wade case in 1972 legally granted women the choice to abort their pregnancy for any reason within a specified gestational limit. Though abortion is still legal in the United States, the Roe ruling has faced much criticism over the years by pro-life activists opposing abortion.
Most states now impose stricter abortion laws while still upholding a woman’s right for a legal abortion. For example, most states now ask for mandatory counseling of a woman opting for abortion before she follows through with the procedure, forewarning her of the potential risks of the procedure, its likely effects on the mother’s mental health and potential risk with breast cancer. States also require that the woman wait for at least 24hrs before following through with the abortion. Some states go as far as requiring the woman to view and hear the fetus via ultrasound before making the final cut.
The gestational limit before which abortion is allowed coincides with the ‘age of viability’ of the fetus after which a fetus is likely to survive outside the womb of the mother. For most states this limit ranges between 20-24 weeks of gestation. Most states allow any licensed medical physician to perform abortion while other states require abortions to be performed in the hospital. Many states also allow the hospitals to refuse abortion.
In case of a minor undergoing abortion, state laws differ among states over parental consent and notification with some states requiring consent from only one or both parents while still others only requiring that both parents be notified beforehand. Due to the ever-going debates on the matters of abortion, state laws are also constantly changing. If you are thinking of aborting your pregnancy, you will want to know about the abortion laws prevalent in your state. A family law attorney will be able to help you in this matter.